×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Box Office: ‘Wreck-It Ralph’ could muscle $50 mil

Disney toon expected to dominate weekend; Par, Denzel also take 'Flight'

Wreck-It Ralph” will easily climb to the top of the domestic box office this weekend, but how much damage Disney’s 3D toon does will depend greatly on how fast crews can fix power outages caused by Hurricane Sandy.

Tracking suggested a $40 million-$50 million opening for “Wreck-It Ralph,” while Paramount’s Denzel Washington drama “Flight” was in line to follow with $12 million-$15 million through Sunday. Rapper RZA’s directorial debut “The Man With the Iron Fists,” from Universal, should land somewhere in the high single digits.

Sony-MGM’s latest Bondpic, “Skyfall,” will continue to dominate overseas plexes, expanding to 53 additional markets including Germany, India, Italy, Mexico and Taiwan. Last weekend, the film debuted to a whopping $80.6 million from 25 markets. Pic crossed $100 million internationally this week.

Theaters up and down the East Coast have been steadily reopening since Monday, which led to a healthy B.O. resurgence on Tuesday in major markets like New York and Washington. But that’s based on severely depressed grosses Monday, when Regal, for instance, closed more than 100 theaters in affected areas.

Regardless, East Coast auds may be too rattled or preoccupied with storm cleanup to go to the movies. Even without that uncertainty, weekend totals were still likely to have trailed last year’s frame, when “Puss in Boots” and “Tower Heist” topped with $33 million and $24 million, respectively.

It’s difficult to quantify how much a dip on the East Coast would effect the weekend’s domestic box office. For context, roughly 24% of Disney’s most recent openings came from 10 major markets hit by the storm, including New York, Boston, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Montreal, Toronto and Washington. That means those regions would, under normal circumstances, contribute $9.6 million of a $40 million opening for “Wreck-It Ralph.”

Some bizzers remain optimistic about the East Coast contribution: “People have been captive since Monday night,” said one distribution exec. “The weather has improved, and people are starting to get out of the house, which hopefully translates through the weekend.”

“Wreck-It Ralph” has been tracking solidly for several weeks. The vidgame-themed toon also garnered positive responses from a slew of early test screenings, especially from gamers and fanboys, a significant boon for evening showtimes. That demo could be key for “Ralph” this weekend since family tracking always is difficult to gauge.

Par debuts “Fight” at a reserved 1,900 locations, though the spread encompasses virtually all of the nation’s top-performing theaters from the major U.S. markets. The $31 million film, which co-stars John Goodman, Kelly Reilly and Don Cheadle, is director Robert Zemeckis’ first live-actioner since 2000’s “Cast Away” and has been heating up with adults lately.

Universal is taking a similarly conservative approach with “Iron Fists,” launching the film at 1,868 Stateside engagements. The martial arts film is a low-risk project for U; pic cost $15 million, with Strike Entertainment’s Marc Abraham and Eric Newman producing. “Flight” and “Iron Fists” could see a minor overlap among African-American and Latino men.

At the specialty B.O., Roadside Attractions bows horror sci-fi pic “The Bay” at 23 domestic locations today.

The Weinstein Co. goes limited with a pair of dark comedies this weekend: “The Details” via Radius-TWC launches at 12 theaters, while Sean Penn starrer “This Must Be the Place” bows at two.

More Film

  • Wings Over Everest

    Terence Chang's 'Wings Over Everest' Set to Swell China's Rescue Film Genre

    “Wings over Everest,” a new action adventure film from veteran producer Terence Chang and “Wolf Warrior 2” producer Lu Jianmin, is poised to join the burgeoning Chinese sub-genre of rescue movies.   The Chinese- and English-language film stars Chinese actress Zhang Jingchu (“Project Gutenberg”; “Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation”), Japanese actor Koji Yakusho (“Babel”; “Memoirs of a [...]

  • The Eight Hundred (The 800)

    China Film Marketing Firms Must Adapt To Internet Age, Says Huayi's Jerry Ye

    Huayi Brothers Pictures CEO and media group VP Jerry Ye made no mention Sunday of the abrupt cancellation of the premiere for his firm’s highly anticipated war epic “The Eight Hundred,” which was set to be the Shanghai Intl. Film Festival’s opening film the night before. Instead, he looked to the future at a panel [...]

  • The Meg

    Chinese Script Development Requires A Different Touch, Top Producers Say

    Leading film producers highlighted the challenges of developing good scripts in China and abroad at a panel during the Shanghai International Film Festival on Sunday. Wanda Media GM Jiang Wei (aka Wayne Jiang) recommended that producers remain aware of the real differences between the scriptwriting process for Chinese productions versus international and co-productions. The fundamental [...]

  • Lou Ye's "Spring Fever"

    Shanghai: Previously-Banned Producer Nai An Now Hails Chinese Film Funding

    At a panel on indie film production at the Shanghai Intl. Film Festival, Chinese and foreign producers discussed the shifting funding landscape for their projects over the years. Nai An, the longtime collaborator of controversial sixth generation Chinese filmmaker Lou Ye, kicked off the talk with a look back at her producing career, which has [...]

  • My Dear Friend

    Shanghai Film Review: 'My Dear Friend'

    Like a slow-acting hallucinogen, Chinese director Yang Pingdao’s audaciously strange and sorrowful feature debut works its magic so gradually that it’s with a slight surprise that halfway through you glance down and realize you’re high off the social-realist ground, suspended surreally in the air. At first a gritty tale of feckless men abandoning their families [...]

  • Agent M (Tessa Thompson) and Agent

    Box Office: 'Men in Black: International' Ranks No. 1 Overseas With $74 Million

    Sony’s “Men in Black: International” is making good on its title, leading overseas box office charts with $74 million from 56 foreign territories. Combined with its disappointing $28 million start in North America, the latest chapter in the sci-fi action series debuted with $102.2 million globally. “Men in Black: International” sees “Thor: Ragnarok” co-stars Tessa [...]

  • Agent H (Chris Hemsworth) and Agent

    'Men in Black: International' Leads Box Office With Muted $28 Million

    Hollywood seems to be coming down with a contagious case of franchise fatigue this summer, as “Men in Black: International” and “Shaft” become the latest sequels largely dismissed by moviegoers in North America. Sony’s “Men in Black: International” led ticket sales at the box office this weekend with $28.5 million, but still fell short of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content