Game on for holiday box office

'Tron,' 'Yogi' opening this weekend

Disney will be waging cyber war leading up to the Christmas B.O. sesh, with “Tron: Legacy” going wide at 3,451 locations, of which 2,424 will be 3D-equipped.

Fanboy-friendly follow-up to the Mouse House’s 1982 original should attract a significant teenage aud — a plus since older-skewing pics typically suffer as adults face multiple pre-holiday distractions. Warner Bros.’ 3D family pic “Yogi Bear,” bowing at 3,515 engagements, including 2,011 in 3D, could start slow with parents preoccupied but gain speed over the holiday.

Adults who do end up visiting the multiplexes will have plenty to choose from, including James L. Brooks’ “How Do You Know,” with Sony launching at 2,483.

Meanwhile, Paramount-Relativity Media’s “The Fighter” and Fox Searchlight’s “Black Swan” expand wide following this week’s Golden Globe and SAG nominations. Both pics have helped prop a robust specialty biz in limited release. “The Fighter” broadens this weekend to 2,503; “Black Swan,” 959.

As in North America, overseas moviegoers are expected to respond well to “Tron: Legacy,” as the film launches day and date this weekend in 26 markets including Australia, Brazil, Japan, Spain and the U.K.

Last weekend’s domestic B.O. saw sluggish perfs from Fox’s “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” and Sony’s “The Tourist”; both studios are hoping interest will build through the end of the year. Typically, adult-driven films, as well as family pics, have higher multiples over the year-end holidays than in any other period.

Kids, teens and young adults should turn out for “Tron” during opening weekend, while word of mouth could help lure older auds once shopping is finished.

With a marketing campaign stretching back to Comic-Con 2008, Disney has high hopes for “Tron.” An attempt to reinvent the original pic for the youth demo, “Tron: Legacy” could also appeal to adults drawn to the 3D visual effects and nostalgia for the first film. Directed by Joseph Kosinski, pic continues the story of Kevin Flynn, played by Jeff Bridges, but centers on his son (Garrett Hedlund). Olivia Wilde and Michael Sheen co-star.

Warners’ “Yogi Bear” is expected to play like similar CGI/live-action hybrids such as “Stuart Little,” which grossed $140 million domestically. That pic bowed the same weekend in 1999 with $15 million, though “Yogi Bear” should benefit from “the nag factor” with kids, said Warners distribution exec Dan Fellman.

Most adult femmes will choose between “How Do You Know” and “Black Swan.” Though the Brooks-directed “How Do You Know” opens on more screens, according to tracking reports, “Swan” is showing higher definite interest among females. “How Do You Know” stars Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson and Jack Nicholson. “Black Swan” has cumed nearly $7 million domestically.

Relativity Media’s “The Fighter,” which Par is distribbing, will appeal mostly to male auds, though females are also showing interest, according to pre-weekend tracking. Stateside cume stands at $402,144. Pic toplines Mark Wahlberg, Christian Bale, Amy Adams and Melissa Leo, all of whom earned both SAG and Golden Globe mentions.

Acting noms for “Rabbit Hole” star Nicole Kidman also could boost interest in the tough-as-nails marital drama, which Lionsgate bows limited today at five locations in New York, L.A, and Toronto.

ATO Pictures’ “Casino Jack,” with Globes nominee Kevin Spacey, will go out in seven U.S. locations.

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