For the 3rd time in 4 Box Office weekends, we see 4 new wide releases enter U.S. cinemas, each looking to open to leave a visible smudge against the far-reaching blanket that is ‘Avengers: Endgame’. Topping the lot on a packed Mother’s Day weekend will be Warner Bros’ ‘Detective Pikachu’, which poses a serious threat to ‘Endgame’s recent dominance with a potential $70m+ weekend. Other releases include the Anne Hathaway-Rebel Wilson comedy ‘The Hustle’, historical biopic ‘Tolkien’, and offbeat STX comedy ‘Poms’, in which promises to be an interesting run-in.
So, what’s opening this weekend?
The main talking point of the weekend sees ‘Pokemon: Detective Pikachu’ go up against ‘Endgame’s 3rd weekend, with the possibility of ‘Detective Pikachu’ stealing the crown for 1st place.
The 1st live-action Pokemon movie stars the voice of Ryan Reynolds as Pikachu, alongside Justice Smith, Ken Watanabe, and Kathryn Newton in an attempt to bring the 2016 video game of the same name onto the big screen.
Warner Bros have pulled no punches here, spending an eye-watering $150m to produce this potential franchise-starter, which so far has received solid (but not spectacular) reviews, such as its 73% score on Rotten Tomatoes.
Its opening? We’re looking at this doing serious business across the States this weekend, in the same vein as the surprise hit ‘The LEGO Movie’ from 2014, which made $69.1m by its opening Sunday. We’re therefore forecasting a very optimistic $70m for ‘Detective Pikachu’, an opening that’ll battle with ‘Endgame’s weekend total right down to the wire.
Next is ‘The Hustle’, the female-remake of 1988 comedy ‘Dirty Rotten Scoundrels’ (which itself was a rehash of 1964’s ‘Bedtime Story’), starring Anne Hathaway, Rebel Wilson, Alex Sharp, and directed by debutant Chris Addison.
Like last weekend’s ‘Long Shot’, it’s difficult to determine just how well ‘The Hustle’ will do on such a crowded weekend, especially considering Wilson’s last outing ‘Isn’t It Romantic’ opened to only $14.7m with little in its way. Despite Mother’s Day hopefully aiding its gross, the film’s retched reception (12% on RT) means we expect a $10m-ish opening here, closely followed by ‘Poms’ with just $6.5m.
It’s an equally stunning cast from comedy ‘Poms’, with Diane Keaton, Jacki Weaver, Pam Grier, Rhea Perlman and others forming a team of women from a retirement community who decide to become cheerleaders. Unlike last year’s ‘Book Club’, which opened to $13.6m on its way to an impressive $68.6m domestic total, ‘Poms’ will fail to find its audience this Mother’s Day, failing to compete with both the aforementioned ‘The Hustle’ and ‘Long Shot’.
Finally, historical drama ‘Tolkien’, based on the life of ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Hobbit’ author J. R. R. Tolkien, is released into around 1,300 cinemas this weekend. The Nicholas Hoult-fronted biopic will need to conjure up some magic if it wants to be seen amongst the crowd, as its forecasted $2m weekend will leave it stranded in 10th place.
What else is on?
It’s looking like another win for ‘Endgame’, who will finish the victor in a close encounter with ‘Detective Pikachu’ this weekend with around $74m – a 50% drop from 7 days ago. By Sunday night, the film will’ve passed ‘Black Panther’ to become the biggest MCU film domestically, as well as the 3rd biggest film in U.S. history. In its immediate sight is ‘Avatar’s $760.5m total, and although it most likely won’t reach that of ‘The Force Awakens’ ($936.6m), ‘Avatar’s $2.79bn worldwide total is still in reach.