U.S. cinemas continue to usher in the summer period with 3 new releases this Box Office weekend, led by the highly-anticipated ‘John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum’, which looks to become the 1st film to cull ‘Endgame’s continued dominance with a $40m+ opening. Also arriving is family-friendly release ‘A Dog’s Journey’, and YA drama ‘The Sun Is Also a Star’, while ‘Detective Pikachu’ looks to build on its strong start from last week, and draw closer to the $100m domestic mark.
So, what’s opening this weekend?
We kick things off with ‘John Wick 3’, the 3rd instalment in the popular Lionsgate franchise, and follow-up to critical and commercial hit ‘John Wick 2’ from 2017. The film sees Keanu Reeves return as the titular character, alongside Laurence Fishburne, Halle Berry, and Ian McShane, with Chad Stahelski returning to the director’s chair.
If it’s not the all-star cast that gets the seats filled, then it’ll surely be the film’s incredible reception (91% on RT), its summer release, and the sheer popularity of the previous films. While ‘John Wick’ opened to $14.4m 5 years ago on its way to a $43m domestic finish, ‘John Wick: Chapter Two’ smashed expectations with its $30.4m opening, ending just $8m short of the $100m domestic mark.
Now ‘John Wick 3’ aims to crescendo into a $40m+ opening, potentially beating the entire gross of the 1st film in just 3 days. Can it do so? We think it can, and forecast a $45m opening, Keanu’s biggest since ‘The Matrix Revolutions’ opened to $48.5m back in 2003.
Next is ‘A Dog’s Journey’, the follow-up to Universal’s ‘A Dog’s Purpose’ from 2017. A surprise hit, ‘Purpose’ grossed $64.5m in the U.S. and over $200m worldwide from just a $22m budget, pushing the studio to greenlight a sequel. Whether or not audiences are still interested however is an issue, especially with family-friendly films like ‘Detective Pikachu’ opening to over $50m just 1 week beforehand, and January’s ‘A Dog’s Way Home’ (which opened to $11.3m) likely filling the audiences talking-dog movie quota for the year.
The film, which sees the return of Josh Gad and Dennis Quaid, will thus struggle to match the $18.2m opening of the 1st, even in the face of decent reviews. An $11m start is in order for the film that may have just bit off more than it could chew.
Finally, this weekend sees the release of YA drama ‘The Sun Is Also a Star’, featuring Yara Shahidi and Charles Melton. Released in just 2,200 cinemas, the book-adaptation won’t trouble ‘John Wick 3’, but if recent films of a similar ilk are to go by (think ‘Everything, Everything’ and ‘Five Feet Apart’), we could see an $8m+ opening here, enough for the film to finish in the top 5 for the weekend.
What else is on?
Last weekend saw ‘Detective Pikachu’ narrowly miss out on top spot due to ‘Endgame’ with its $55m opening, and will now look to avoid a weekend drop bigger than 50% if it wants to end Sunday night at the $100m domestic mark. We’re expecting a $30m gross, enough to make ‘Detective Pikachu’ the 4th biggest video game adaptation in U.S. history, only behind ‘Rampage’, ‘Angry Birds’, and 2001’s ‘Tomb Raider’.
Meanwhile, comedy ‘The Hustle’ won’t be conning anyone else anytime soon, with a weekend forecast of just $6m condemning this one as a likely flop. Not the greatest of years for Anna Hathaway, whose previous effort in ‘Serenity’ also bombed with audiences and at the Box Office.