'Coco' To Lead Post-Thanksgiving Weekend as Limited Releases Take the Stage
Following a strong opening last weekend, Disney and Pixar's Coco is looking at a second weekend atop the box office. In fact, with no new wide releases hitting the marketplace this weekend's top ten is looking a lot like last weekend's as the top five seems unlikely to change while a few expanding titles jockey for position in bottom five. There are, however, some choice limited releases beginning their roll-out this weekend including A24's much anticipated The Disaster Artist and Guillermo del Toro's Venice Film Festival winner The Shape of Water along with the 20th anniversary re-release of one of the highest grossing movies of all-time.

Looking at Coco's second weekend the two comparisons we're eying are Tangled's 56% second weekend drop and Moana's 50% sophomore dip. Considering Coco has been performing along the same lines as Moana throughout the week so far we're anticipating an even smaller drop than both films, looking at a ~48% or so dip and a $26.5 million second weekend, pushing Coco's domestic total toward $110 million after 12 days in release.

Justice League is looking at a second straight finish in the runner-up position, likely to fall around 58% this weekend for a three-day right around $17 million. By the end of the day Sunday the fifth film in the DC Extended Universe is going to push over $195 million.

Lionsgate's Wonder has delivered nearly $75 million so far and in its third weekend in release it's expanding even further, playing in a total of 3,449 locations (+277) and after dipping just 17.7% over the Thanksgiving weekend three-day. Typically we'd be looking at a drop around 45% or so coming off the holiday session, but given the gains in theaters and word of mouth we're looking at a drop closer to 38% for a three-day around $14 million and even that might be too conservative as the film approaches $90 million domestically.

Disney and Marvel's Thor: Ragnarok should finish in fourth with $8 million or so as it will soon become the tenth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to top $300 million domestically.

Look for either Paramount's Daddy's Home 2 or Fox's Murder on the Orient Express to round out the top five as the two films have played neck-and-neck since release and should finish around $6-7 million this weekend as both films push over $80 million domestically.

Outside the top five Fox Searchlight is adding 816 theaters to their release of Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri for a total of 1,430. The law of averages tell us a Searchlight title of this size should be looking at a 39% gain as a result. Since we're coming off a Thanksgiving weekend we're going to cut that back a bit, but still anticipating a 30% bump or so and a three-day around $5.7 million for a 24-day cume closing in on $15 million.

Also look for A24's Lady Bird to climb back into the top ten this weekend as it expands to 1,194 locations (+403) and has had quite a week already receiving a trio of awards from the National Board of Review along with the New York Film Critics naming it Best Picture and star Saoirse Ronan being named Best Actress. Currently the film is pacing closely to the 2006 performance for Little Miss Sunshine, though its further expansion last weekend didn't quite reach Sunshine's level and its not expanding quite as much as that film did, not to mention its a different theatrical market compared to eleven years ago. Currently we're anticipating a 5-8% jump this weekend and a three-day over $4 million.

Meanwhile, a strong selection of limited titles are making their debuts this weekend beginning with A24's The Disaster Artist, which is opening in 19 theaters. The film, from writer-director James Franco, has been talked about since its first trailer debuted and reviews have been positive, scoring a 77 on Metacritic.

Additionally, Fox Searchlight will release Guillermo del Toro's Venice Film Festival winner The Shape of Water into two theaters and Amazon Studios' release of Woody Allen's Wonder Wheel will arrive in five theaters in New York and Los Angeles before going nationwide in week three. Shape of Water has received stellar reviews leading to an 88 on Metacritic while Wonder Wheel premiered at the New York Film Festival in mid-October and received mediocre reviews, currently holding a 49 on Metacritic.

One question to consider with this weekend's new limited releases is whether any of them will deliver a per theater average better than last weekend's Call Me By Your Name, which delivered the best per theater opening average of 2017 so far with a $103,233 average from four locations. The top five opening averages for 2017 are below:

  • Call Me by Your Name
[/link] (SPC) - $103,233 per theater average
  • Lady Bird
[/link] (A24) - $91,109 per theater average
  • The Big Sick
[/link] (LGF) - $84,315 per theater average
  • Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
[/link] (FoxS) - $80,542 per theater average
  • The Battleship Island
[/link] (CJ) - $59,344 per theater average

Also this weekend Paramount will re-release James Cameron's Titanic into 87 theaters for its 20th anniversary. This will be the film's second re-release and will add to its place as the third highest grossing domestic release of all-time with $658.6 million and second largest worldwide release ever behind Avatar with $2.186 billion.

This weekend's forecast is directly below.

  • Coco (3,987 theaters) - $26.5 M
  • Justice League (3,820 theaters) - $17.2 M
  • Wonder (3,449 theaters) - $14.0 M
  • Thor: Ragnarok (3,148 theaters) - $8.1 M
  • Daddy's Home 2 (3,403 theaters) - $7.0 M
  • Murder on the Orient Express (3,201 theaters) - $6.7 M
  • Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (1,430 theaters) - $5.7 M
  • Lady Bird (1,194 theaters) - $4.3 M
  • The Star (2,822 theaters) - $3.5 M
  • A Bad Moms Christmas (2,251 theaters) - $2.8 M

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