×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Box Office: ‘Smurfs: The Lost Village,’ ‘Going in Style’ Won’t Top ‘Boss Baby’

It’s shaping up to be a quiet weekend at the multiplexes. “The Fate of the Furious” is still revving up its engines, gearing up for what’s expected to be a massive opening when it roars onto screens on April 14, 2017. That leaves a trio of smaller new releases looking to make a mark before Vin Diesel and company blot out everything within the general vicinity of a movie theater. The latest “Fast & Furious” will have no trouble topping $100 million in its first weekend of release.

“This is the calm before the storm,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at ComScore.

Smurfs: The Lost Village” is shaping up to be the strongest performer among the newcomers with a debut of between $15 million to $16 million. The family film is an attempt by Sony to reinvigorate a franchise that deflated. After starting strong with 2011’s “The Smurfs” ($563.7 million globally), the series veered off track with 2013’s “The Smurfs 2,” which made $347.5 million worldwide on a $105 million budget.

Those pictures were live-action and animation hybrids, an approach that the studio has scrapped. “The Lost Village” will be entirely CGI, resulting in substantial cost savings. The latest film has a $60 million budget. Those domestic returns look soft, but Sony is banking on stronger overseas results. Both of the other Smurfs adventures made more than 70% of their revenues from foreign markets, and the studio thinks that this new installment will have similar appeal.

“The Lost Village” has a voice cast that includes Demi Lovato, Rainn Wilson, Mandy Patinkin, and Julia Roberts, and follows the blue creatures as they journey through the forbidden forest and tangle with the evil wizard Gargamel — plot points that were a staple of Saturday morning cartoons for a generation of millennials.

“The Lost Village” may also benefit from a break in family film programming. There isn’t another major release geared at parents and kids until “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul” opens on May 19.

“‘Smurfs’ could have staying power,” said Shawn Robbins, senior analyst at BoxOffice.com. “It may end up being stronger because there’s not much competition.”

Then there’s “Going in Style,” a remake of the 1979 heist comedy about a gang of geriatrics who turn to bank robbery to enliven their retirements. The first film had George Burns, Art Carney, and Lee Strasberg playing the unlikely felons, this version offers up Morgan Freeman, Alan Arkin, and Michael Caine as graying crooks. Zach Braff, late of “Scrubs,” directs. New Line and Village Roadshow partnered on the comedy, which cost an economical $25 million to bring to screens. It’s looking at a muted $8 million opening when it premieres on more than 3,000 screens.

Pure Flix’s “The Case for Christ” is the weekend’s other new entrant. The faith-based film will try to preach to the converted and convertible alike, but religious fare can be hit or miss. For every “War Room,” a low-budget, $67.8 million smash, there’s a “Ben-Hur,” a pricey disaster. Pure Flix didn’t release a budget for “The Case for Christ,” but it looks like it falls on the “War Room” end of things in terms of costs. The film should open to a solid $5 million when it unspools across roughly 1,100 screens. “The Case for Christ” centers on an investigative journalist and atheist who ends up converting Christianity after going through an elaborate attempt to disprove God’s existence. Mike Vogel, Erika Christensen, and Faye Dunaway (last seen opening the wrong envelope at the Oscars) round out the cast.

Unless interest surges in “Smurfs: The Lost Village,” Fox and DreamWorks Animation’s “The Boss Baby” and Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” will grab the top two spots on the domestic box office chart. Look for “The Boss Baby” to pick up another $25 million, while “Beauty and the Beast” should nab another $20 million and change as it barrels towards the $1 billion mark globally.

More Film

  • '2019 Oscar Nominated Short Films: Live

    Film Review: ‘2019 Oscar Nominated Short Films: Live Action’

    The Academy skewed dark in its choice of live-action shorts this year, selecting four films to slit your wrists by — each one featuring child endangerment in a different form — and a fifth, about a diabetic on her death bed, that finds a glimmer of uplift at the other end of life. If that [...]

  • How the 'Rich Eisen Show' Mixes

    How the 'Rich Eisen Show' Mixes Sports and Showbiz in an Entertaining Mix

    Walking through the El Segundo studio where veteran sportscaster Rich Eisen tapes his daily “Rich Eisen Show,” the sheer density of sports memorabilia is overwhelming — everything from game balls to jerseys, gear, autographs and uncountable photos are crammed onto every inch of wall and desk space. But step into Eisen’s dressing room, and the [...]

  • Yorgos Lanthimos

    Film News Roundup: 'The Favourite' Director Yorgos Lanthimos Boards Crime Drama

    In today’s film news roundup, Yorgos Lanthimos has set up a crime drama, “Here Lies Daniel Tate” is being adapted, and Donna Langley becomes a member of the USC film school board. DIRECTOR HIRED “The Favourite” producer-director Yorgos Lanthimos has signed on to write and direct crime drama “Pop. 1280,” an adaptation of Jim Thompson’s [...]

  • Brody Stevens Dead

    Comedian Brody Stevens Dies at 48

    Prominent Los Angeles comedian Brody Stevens died Friday in Los Angeles, Variety has confirmed. He was 48. “Brody was an inspiring voice who was a friend to many in the comedy community,” Stevens’ reps said in a statement. “He pushed creative boundaries and his passion for his work and his love of baseball were contagious. [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business

    Hollywood Agents Blast Writers Guild Over New Proposals

    The war between the Writers Guild of America and Hollywood agents has escalated as the two sides battle over the rules on how writers are represented. The latest volley emerged Friday from Karen Stuart, executive director of the Association of Talent Agents, who accused WGA leaders of misleading its members and asserted that the guild [...]

  • Xavier Legrand Custody

    Cesar Awards: Xavier Legrand’s ‘Custody’ Wins Best Film

    Xavier Legrand’s feature debut “Custody,” a tense portrait of a family torn by domestic violence, won best film, actress (for Lea Drucker), and original screenplay at the 44th Cesar Awards, which took place at the Salle Pleyel in Paris. The awards are France’s highest film honors. “Custody,” which marks Legrand’s follow up to his Oscar-nominated [...]

  • Editorial use only. No book cover

    'Crazy Rich Asians,' 'Late Show With Stephen Colbert' Win Publicity Campaign Awards

    Hollywood publicists have selected “Crazy Rich Asians” as the top movie publicity campaign for 2018 and “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” as the best television campaign. Warner Bros.’ “Crazy Rich Asians” topped the campaigns for Disney’s “Black Panther,” Fox’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Paramount’s “A Quiet Place,” Sony’s “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” and Universal’s “Halloween” for [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content