You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Box Office: ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ Launches in Choppy Waters with $575,000 Thursday

Ron Howard’s whaling drama “In the Heart of the Sea” has launched with a modest $575,000 in Thursday night preview screenings in the U.S.

Warner Bros. is opening  “In the Heart of the Sea” at 3,103 domestic locations Friday amid muted expectations of an opening weekend between $12 million and $14 million. The number is a disappointment, given a production budget around $100 million. By comparison, Warner Bros. saw $650,000 for “Pan” in Thursday night previews on its way to a $15.1 million opening weekend on Oct. 9-11.

The film, starring Chris Hemsworth, is the only new release this weekend as many moviegoers grow increasingly fixated on next week’s worldwide premiere of Disney’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

“In the Heart of the Sea” will likely win this weekend and end the three-week winning streak held by Liosngate’s “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2,” which should take in around $10 million. “Mockingjay – Part 2” has already taken in $232 million in the U.S. and another $300 million internationally.

Universal’s second frame of comic horror film “Krampus” should snag third place with an $8 million weekend. The overall weekend will be one of the slowest of 2015.

“In the Heart of the Sea” is based on Nathaniel Philbrick’s 2000 book about the sinking of the whaling ship Essex in 1820 — which inspired Herman Melville’s “Moby-Dick.” Benjamin Walker, Cillian Murphy, Tom Holland, Ben Whishaw and Brendan Gleeson also star.

Howard shot the film in 2013 and Warner Bros. had originally planned to open it in March of this year, but the studio decided earlier this year to push it back nine months.

“In the Heart of the Sea” debuted overseas last weekend with a moderate $18.5 million from 38 markets. Village Roadshow co-financed the film.

Hemsworth is best known for portraying Thor in Marvel’s cinematic universe. The Australian actor previously teamed up with Howard for 2013’s racing drama “Rush.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Love You Forever

    'Love You Forever' Heads for Valentine's Day Release

    Hong Kong’s Edko Films has set a February 2020 release for upcoming romantic drama “Love You Forever.” The film is directed by Yao Tingting, who previously made another nostalgic romance “Yesterday Once More,” which went on to enjoy a $27 million global success in 2016. Edko’s Bill Kong is named as producer. The new film [...]

  • The Irishman

    Film News Roundup: 'The Irishman' Wins Capri Film Festival Screenplay Award

    In today’s film news roundup, Steven Zaillian’s script for “The Irishman” wins an award, MGM hires a trio of marketing execs, MTV Documentary Films sets three new projects; and “The Caretaker of Lorne Field” is becoming a movie. AWARDS Steven Zaillian’s screenplay for Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman” will receive the best original screenplay award at [...]

  • Saturday Fiction

    'Saturday Fiction' Yanked From China's Golden Rooster Film Festival on Eve of Debut

    Just a day before its scheduled China debut, director Lou Ye’s latest film, “Saturday Fiction,” has been pulled from its slot as the opener of the mainland’s Golden Rooster Film Festival because of unspecified “internal production problems,” according to Chinese film website Mtime. Speculation has been spreading online that it will also be yanked from [...]

  • DeVon Franklin

    DeVon Franklin Signs First-Look Deal at Paramount Pictures

    DeVon Franklin has signed a first-look producing deal at Paramount Pictures. Under his Franklin Entertainment banner, Franklin previously produced inspirational and faith-based films, including this year’s “Breakthrough,” starring Chrissy Metz, as well as “Miracles From Heaven,” with Jennifer Garner and Queen Latifah, and the animated film “The Star,” toplined by Zachary Levi, Gina Rodriguez, Oprah [...]

  • Harriet Movie BTS

    'Harriet' Costume Designer Paul Tazewell on How He Crafted Harriet Tubman's Look

    For many, Harriet Tubman’s journey is one we’re taught about in school. We know she’s a heroine, an abolitionist who led slaves to their freedom via the underground railroad. Unless you’ve read the books by Kate Clifford Larson or Beverly Lowry, “We didn’t receive the whole story,” says costume designer Paul Tazewell. Until now. Kasi [...]

  • Viacom HQ LA

    ViacomCBS Sets HR and Inclusion Chiefs

    ViacomCBS has named corporate heads of HR and inclusion as the companies prepare for the merger that is set to close early next month. The soon-to-combine Viacom and CBS have tapped Nielsen alum Nancy Phillips to serve as exec VP and chief people officer. Viacom alum Marva Smalls will serve as global head of inclusion, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content