GI Joe Channing Tatum

'Host,' 'Temptation' each likely to debut in the mid-teens

With $2.2 million from Wednesday late-nights already in its Easter basket, Paramount-MGM’s “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” will surely lead the holiday weekend, while holdover “The Croods” battles new entries “The Host” from Open Road and Tyler Perry’s “Temptation” from Lionsgate.

Based on early results, “G.I. Joe,” at 3,719 Stateside locations (including 302 Imax), is tracking to earn $45 million-$50 million in four days, with a potential $50 million-plus international bow, from 53 markets.

Fox-DreamWorks Animation’s “The Croods” will continue to dominate with families, landing in second place with a high-$20 millions soph-sesh take. The toon opened last weekend with $43.6 million Stateside and has cumed $57 million through Wednesday.

“Host” and “Temptation” each should collect in the mid-teens domestically. “Temptation,” however, could see an upside in the high-teens given how past Perry pics have played during Easter. “Host” bows at 3,202 engagements; “Temptation,” at 2,047.

Domestic box office has slumped below 2012 by about 15% and totals will continue to feel the effect of lofty “Hunger Games” comparisons.

This time last year “Hunger Games” won its second frame with $58 million, while “Wrath of the Titans” and “Mirror Mirror” bowed with $33 million and $18 million, respectively. Easter Sunday falls a week earlier this year.

The spring break play period will help the mid-week perf of “Twilight” author Stephenie Meyer’s “The Host,” as it looks to target teen girls. But Open Road has also spent considerable marketing muscle highlighting the film’s action and sci-fi elements. Pic, starring Saoirse Ronan and Max Irons, is written and directed by “Gattaca” multihyphenate Andrew Niccol.

“The Host” cost in the low $30 millions after tax rebates (budget was $40 million), from financiers Inferno Entertainment and Silver Reel. Open Road acquired domestic rights for $2 million.

Meanwhile, Lionsgate went after the faith-based market in earnest with “Temptation,” its 13th Perry film. The company distributed “Temptation”-themed faith guides to 85 prominent African-American churches, reaching approximately 70,000 members. Lionsgate also made the rounds to key faith-based media outlets.

The marital drama originally was called “Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor,” but Lionsgate insisted on a shorter title as an attempt to add sex appeal. The film stars Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Lance Gross, Kim Kardashian and Vanessa Williams. Perry traditionally has done well over Easter, launching such past successes as “Why Did I Get Married Too?” and “Madea’s Big Happy Family.” This is Perry’s first Easter drama and non-franchise pic, however.

“G.I. Joe” will dominate the international frame, bowing throughout 75% of the overseas market, including Russia, the U.K., France and Australia. China is slated to bow the pic April 15.

The film cost $130 million to produce (not including marketing), from co-producers MGM and Skydance Prods. Jon Chu directed the actioner, which stars Dwayne Johnson, Channing Tatum and Bruce Willis.

A list of specialty titles hope to benefit from increased vacation filmgoing, including Focus Features’ Ryan Gosling-Bradley Cooper drama-thriller “The Place Beyond the Pines,” at four locations.

Gravitas Ventures launches survival drama “Detour,” from helmer-scribe William Dickerson, in 10 U.S. theatrical markets, as well as day-and-date across all major VOD and digital streaming platforms.

BOWING:

Film (Distrib): Locations

  • G.I. Joe: Retaliation” (Par): 3,719
  • “The Host” (Open Road): 3,202
  • “Temptation” (Lionsgate): 2,047
  • “Detour” (Gravitas Venture): 10
  • “The Place Beyond the Pines” (Focus): 4
  • “Room 237″ (IFC): 2
  • Welcome to the Punch” (IFC): 2

EXPANDING:

  • “The Sapphires” (Weinstein): 4-12

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