Box-Office Oracle: ‘Hangover 2’ Over ‘Kung Fu Panda 2’? R Rated Over Animated? Yessir!

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NOTE: These predictions are for Friday through Sunday and not the long weekend.

You pick against animation at your peril, but the momentum for the new releases this weekend seems to be headed in the opposite direction. Tracking has The Hangover Part II winning, plus Kung Fu Panda 2 might be penalized for 3D. Let’s break it down!

Laremy predicted the #1 movie correctly 3 Weeks In A Row
Back in 2009 the opening weekends for The Hangover were $44m / $32m. I’m just predicting a much higher frontload now that The Wolfpack has entered the public consciousness. Popular sequels can expect a 20 to 30 percent rise on opening weekend, almost irregardless of the quality. Speaking of, did you catch the 46 percent disparity on the RottenTomatoes score between the original and this one? Yikes.

I’m seeing it in an hour, so I’ll reserve judgment, but a terrible Hangover sequel will still bank because people like the characters. And it’s the summer, where quality is job #12. So the success of this project will come down to the multiplier. They had to have at least doubled the original’s $35m production budget ($80 million according to Wikipedia), so a 10x multiplier is likely off the table, but I’m sure Warner Bros. would be thrilled with even a 5x.

Prediction: $63.262 million

The original opened at $60m, so why will this one miss out on its sequel bump? 3-D. People don’t want to pay extra for an effect no one particularly cares about. And think if you’ve got more than one child! You’re just setting money on fire at some point.
Prediction: $56.912 million
You’ve got to project at least a 60 percent dip based on precedent and competition. But my oh my, $300m in international dollars means you can expect more Pirates movies, even if you don’t want ’em, but would they dare doing it if Johnny Depp decided not to return?
Prediction: $34.06 million
The weekday holds have been very solid, and it stands at $64m overall, so that $32m production budget won’t be a problem. Though, truly, this film shouldn’t have cost as much as the original Hangover, the benefit of making a comedy is saving on production costs.
Prediction: $14.845 million
5. Thor
$400m means I can’t really poke fun at this title. Though that 56 percent dip last weekend means that people chose Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Bridesmaids in a big way over Thor.
Prediction: $7.14 million
$516m on a $125m production budget! They’ll be able to afford anyone they want for this franchise, get ready for some spectacular cameos.
Prediction: $5.08 million
7. Rio
And then the bottom four films came up on my spreadsheet, almost like an error in the formula.
Prediction: $1.952 million
Last Memorial Day had the same thing. The two wide releases, some solid holdovers, and then dreg city.
Prediction: $1.9 million
I’ve started a Something Borrowed support group. We talk about when we saw it, and how our life has been a little worse since. If you decide to join, you’ve got to bring the drinks for your first meeting. All are welcome.
Prediction: $1.56 million
Take the bottom four titles, add them together, multiply by nine, and you’ve just about got Hangover II numbers. No soup for them!
Prediction: $1.459 million

How say you? You like Panda 2 at the top, you know, for the kids? Am I too high or low on Hangover II? Want to throw out a per theater average for The Tree of Life and its four theaters? Predictions away!

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