Universal's The Photograph looks as if it will be in a neck-and-neck race with Sony's Fantasy Island for third place. The romance edged out the PG-13 thriller on Friday, bringing in an estimated $6.2 million and is expected to finish right around $14 million for the four-day. The film received a "B+" CinemaScore from opening day audiences.
Meanwhile, Sony's Fantasy Island brought in an estimated $5.4 million on Friday and is expected to finish around $13-14 million for the four-day. The film received a "C-" CinemaScore from opening day crowds.
Looking to round out the weekend top ten is Searchlight's Downhill, which is performing a little better than expected after pulling in an estimated $2 million on Friday and currently expected to finish around $5.5 million for the holiday frame. Audiences, however, weren't enamored with what they say, giving the film a "D" CinemaScore.
You can check out all of the Friday estimates right here and we'll be back tomorrow morning with a complete look at the weekend.
FRIDAY AM UPDATE: Paramount's Sonic the Hedgehog delivered an exceptional $3 million from Thursday preview grosses, beginning at 5PM in 3,150 locations. Based on the comps we were looking at ahead of release, this is well ahead of the animated comps and is actually only $500k behind preview grosses for Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. It's also ahead of the $2.2 million in previews for The LEGO Batman Movie ($53m opening) and the $2.6 million in previews for Dumbo ($45.9m opening).
Universal's The Photograph kicked things off with previews in 2,250 locations on Thursday night, beginning at 7PM, with $650,000.
Sony's Fantasy Island did not hold previews last night.
We'll take a closer look at things tomorrow morning once Friday estimates come in. For now you can check out our weekend preview below.
WEEKEND PREVIEW: Presidents Day weekend ushers in four new wide releases with Paramount's Sonic the Hedgehog looking to deliver one of the largest openings ever for a video game adaptation. Elsewhere, Sony will debut Blumhouse's Fantasy Island, Universal will release the romance The Photograph in time for Valentine's Day and Searchlight debuts Downhill, a remake of the 2014 feature Force Majeure.
At the top of the box office, Paramount's Sonic the Hedgehog is looking to race to an easy victory. The adaptation of the SEGA video game will launch in over 4,100 locations with the studio anticipating a performance in the low $40 million range and should the numbers we're seeing hold it could climb closer to $50 million by the end of the holiday weekend.
IMDb page view comps show the film performing very well over the two weeks leading up to release when placed alongside releases such as Captain Underpants, Detective Pikachu, Angry Birds and even 2015's The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water, which debuted with over $55 million in early February 2015. Added to that, early reviews show critics giving the film a barely positive rating of 65% rating on RottenTomatoes. All told, we're looking for a four-day performance topping $45 million and wouldn't be surprised to see it climb even higher. Should our forecast hold we may be looking at the sixth largest Presidents Day opener ever and the third largest opening for a video game adaptation.
In the runner-up position, WB's Birds of Prey will slip to second place in its sophomore frame as we're looking for a drop around -49% compared to opening weekend. The film certainly could hold on a bit better than that given the holiday weekend, but right now a four-day performance topping $21 million seems about right, pushing the film's domestic cume around $64 million by the end of the holiday frame.
Third position should belong to Sony with the release of Blumhouse's Fantasy Island, which will debut in over 2,700 theaters with the studio anticipating a four-day performance anywhere from $13-15 million, which is a bit ahead of fresh tracking we've just received, putting the film's expected performance closer to $12 million over four days, which falls below what we had seen as of just last week. That being said, we've seen some potential for an upside, pacing closer to the studio estimates for the PG-13 thriller than the studio is anticipating.
IMDb page view performance for Fantasy Island show it pacing a bit behind the likes of Happy Death Day ($26m opening) and Ouija ($19.8m opening) while outpacing the sequels for both of those films. While we don't necessarily expect this one to quite reach $20 million for the four-day, a three-day around $14 million, pushing toward a $15.5 million four-day performance seems well within reach.
In fourth we come to Universal's The Photograph, which serves as the only romance title in release over this Valentine's Day weekend, which should give the film a bit of a boost this Friday at the very least. The studio is looking for a four-day launch in the low-teens from 2,516 locations and with positive reviews -- 79% on RottenTomatoes -- and the fact it gives couples something to watch over the weekend, that should make that number attainable, at least on the lower end.
Rounding out the top five is Sony's Bad Boys for Life, which we expect to bring in around $9.7 million for the four-day, pushing the film's domestic cume to $180 million by the end of the holiday frame. Should that forecast hold, the film will push ahead of star Will Smith's Men in Black 3 and Hitch, to become his eighth largest domestic release all-time.
Next we come to this past weekend's Best Picture winner. Neon will expand Parasite into its largest theater count yet, nearly doubling the 1,060 locations it has played in over the past two weeks to just over 2,000 venues. We're currently looking for a +90-100% boost for the film's performance and a three-day topping $3 million and a $4+ million four-day. This feels like a conservative forecast as interest in the film has certainly piqued following the Oscar ceremony just a few days ago and this could really prove to be a breakout moment as the film looks to push beyond $40 million domestically, having already surpassed the $37.6 million domestic performance for Pan's Labyrinth, serving as the fifth largest foreign language release in North America all-time.
Finally, we come to Searchlight's Downhill, which is likely to find itself scratching and clawing for a spot in the top ten and likely coming up short. Studio expectations are for a four-day performance around $4 million, but we are having a hard time getting much higher than $3 million as interest in terms of IMDb page view performance is low and reviews -- which would seem much needed for a film like this -- since its Sundance debut aren't any better, currently holding at 44% on RottenTomatoes.
This weekend's three and four-day forecasts are directly below. This post will be updated on Friday morning with Thursday night preview results followed by Friday estimates on Saturday morning, and a complete weekend recap on Sunday morning.
- Sonic the Hedgehog (4,167 theaters) - $40.0 M
- Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn (4,236 theaters) - $16.6 M
- Fantasy Island (2,784 theaters) - $14 M
- The Photograph (2,516 theaters) - $11.5 M
- Bad Boys for Life (3,185 theaters) - $8.0 M
- 1917 (3,081 theaters) - $6.7 M
- Dolittle (2,866 theaters) - $3.9 M
- Jumanji: The Next Level (2,410 theaters) - $4.1 M
- Parasite (2,001 theaters) - $3.1 M
- The Gentlemen (1,802 theaters) - $2.9 M
- Sonic the Hedgehog (4,130 theaters) - $46.0 M
- Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn (4,236 theaters) - $21.7 M
- Fantasy Island (2,784 theaters) - $15.5 M
- The Photograph (2,500 theaters) - $13.0 M
- Bad Boys for Life (3,185 theaters) - $9.7 M
- 1917 (3,081 theaters) - $8.2 M
- Jumanji: The Next Level (2,410 theaters) - $5.0 M
- Dolittle (2,866 theaters) - $4.9 M
- Parasite (2,001 theaters) - $4.0 M
- The Gentlemen (1,802 theaters) - $3.4 M
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