“Zootopia” will tower over the competition for the second straight weekend, as the Disney animated hit looks to add $40 million to its grosses.
That will push the story of a plucky rabbit who becomes a cop past the $100 million mark, easily securing first place on the domestic box office chart. Critics have loved the film, and audiences seem to agree, handing it an A CinemaScore rating, which indicates it will show some endurance.
It’s been a real case of feast or famine this year. Over the first two months of the year ticket sales have been up nearly 10% over 2015 thanks to success stories such as “Zootopia” and “Deadpool.” While those films prove that blockbusters don’t have to debut in just the summer or holiday season, there’s a clear case of income disparity. The flops have piled up at a rapid pace — among the DOA are “Zoolander 2,” “Gods of Egypt,” and “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.”
A cluster of new releases crowd into the marketplace this weekend, looking to prove they’re made of stronger stuff. “10 Cloverfield Lane,” a spiritual follow-up to the 2008 horror hit “Cloverfield,” is shaping up to be the most potent. The Paramount Pictures and Bad Robot release centers on a woman (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) who wakes up with a group of survivalists that maintain a chemical attack has made the world uninhabitable. This apocalyptic thriller cost roughly $15 million to make and should pull in $19 million when it debuts in approximately 3,200 locations. That puts it in a good position to make a profit.
Sony Pictures will counter with “The Brothers Grimsby,” a spy spoof from comic star Sacha Baron Cohen, that made headlines for a scene that shows presidential hopeful Donald Trump contracting AIDS. Despite the controversy, the film is struggling to get attention, and should to open to a lackluster $8 million. That’s a far cry from other Baron Cohen debuts such as “Bruno” ($30 million opening), “Borat” ($26.4 million) and “The Dictator” ($17.4 million). It will screen at approximately 2,200 locations.
Then there’s “The Young Messiah,” a faith-based play from Focus Features, that follows Jesus’ boyhood. Films geared at the Christian community can be slow burns, relying heavily on word-of-mouth. To raise its profile, Focus has made the rounds on religious broadcasts such as “The 700 Club,” and sent director Cyrus Nowrasteh to speak at religious conferences across the country.”The Young Messiah” should generate $7 million from more than 1,750 domestic locations.
Lastly, Lionsgate and Codeblack Films will offer up “The Perfect Match,” a romantic comedy about a free-loving bachelor who makes a bet to be monogamous. The film should do roughly $5 million worth of business for the weekend.