“Beauty and the Beast” shows no signs of slowing down.
The Disney smash has earned more than $700 million in its first three weeks of release, and it could top the domestic box office chart yet again with roughly $40 million. Whether “Beauty and the Beast” three-peats as the weekend winner depends on how many people turn out for “Boss Baby” or “The Ghost in the Shell,” two new wide releases scheduled to hit theaters.
Despite appealing to the same family audience as “Beauty and the Beast,” “Boss Baby” looks to be in the stronger position. The animated feature about a young boy struggling to adjust to life with his attention-grabbing baby brother is on track to debut to $30 million when it opens across 3,773 locations.
DreamWorks Animation produced the picture, which is being distributed by Fox. The studio didn’t offer up a budget. Critics don’t care for the film, with Variety‘s Owen Gleiberman knocking “Boss Baby” as “a wee bit tiresome.”
“The Ghost in the Shell,” an adaptation of a popular Japanese Manga, has been dogged by controversy over the filmmakers’ decision to cast Scarlett Johansson as Major instead of an Asian actress. Johansson has previously scored in action movies like “Lucy,” but it’s unclear whether or not the “whitewashing” charges will hurt the box office.
As it stands, “The Ghost in the Shell” should open to $25 million from approximately 3,400 locations, a weak result given its $110 million production budget. “The Ghost in the Shell” follows a cyber-enhanced soldier tasked with foiling a set of terrorist hackers. Paramount produced the picture in conjunction with DreamWorks Pictures and Reliance Entertainment.