×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Christopher Nolan’s ‘Dunkirk’ Eyes $40 Million in Early Box Office Tracking

Dunkirk” isn’t landing at the box office for another few weekends, but according to early industry tracking, it could shoot up to $40 million.

The World War II movie, from Warner Bros. and director Christopher Nolan’s own Syncopy Inc., looks to land in the $30 million to $40 million range if estimates are accurate. Those numbers come from outside industry tracking, not Warner Bros.

Slated for a July 21 release, it should lead a fairly busy weekend against two other films — “Girls Trip” and “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.” One key factor that could influence “Dunkirk’s” first weekend tally is that it’s opening two weekends after “Spider-Man: Homecoming” is expected to post huge numbers, and the weekend after “Planet of the Apes.” A lot of attention will be paid to how those movies perform, and hold into their second and third weekends. Tracking for “Dunkirk” is early, so the numbers are bound to change between now and its release.

Even $40 million would be Nolan’s lowest opening in wide release since “The Prestige” made $14.8 million in 2006. That said, his modern slate has concentrated heavily on the reliably bankable Caped Crusader — in 2008, “Batman: The Dark Knight” opened to $158.4 million, and four years later “The Dark Knight Rises” made even more, $160.9 million. Nolan’s original works have also done well. “Interstellar” opened low domestically, for its price tag, with $47.5 million, but was boosted by a huge take overseas. “Inception” made $62.8 million in its first weekend. Still, unlike “Dunkirk,” “Interstellar” and “Inception” had major movie stars in top billing.

“Dunkirk” is set during the early stages of World War II when retreating Allied soldiers were evacuated from a beach in France. The ensemble cast is led by newcomers Fionn Whitehead, Tom Glynn-Carney, and Jack Lowden. Harry Styles makes his acting debut (outside of “Saturday Night Live” and his own music videos). Styles’ hordes of fans on social media who helped sell out his first world tour in seconds, should come into play, should the superstar promote the film on those channels. Other familiar faces including Cillian Murphy, Mark Rylance, and Tom Hardy appear further down the call sheet.

“Durkirk’s” release comes 19 years to the weekend after “Saving Private Ryan” opened in theaters to $30.6 million, and went on to win five Oscars. Other top-earners in the World War II genre include “Pearl Harbor,” which opened to $59.1 million in 2001, and “Inglourious Basterds” which made $38.1 million in its opening weekend.

Reviews have yet to be released, but social media buzz for the film has topped the charts for a week in December, and again in May — both times a trailer for the film was released. Warner Bros. announced on Wednesday that the movie will appear in 125 70MM theaters, or the widest release in the format in 25 years.

More Film

  • Backtrace Review

    Film Review: 'Backtrace'

    “You can’t kill me! I died seven years ago!” It’s very much to the credit of Matthew Modine that he persuasively sells this melodramatic scrap of dialogue, and every other aspect of his trickily written lead character, in “Backtrace,” a better-than-average VOD-centric thriller that likely wouldn’t work nearly so well without the veteran actor’s totally [...]

  • Brett Leonard Boards 'Elijah'

    Film News Roundup: 'Lawnmower Man' Director Brett Leonard Boards 'Elijah'

    In today’s film news roundup, “Elijah” gets a director, a French fry documentary starts shooting and “Uglydolls” moves its release date forward. PROJECT LAUNCH Brett Leonard, best known for directing ”The Lawnmower Man” and “Virtuosity,” will direct the supernatural feature film “Elijah,” based on the Old Testament prophet. The project is set up at Winter [...]

  • SAG-AFTRA HQ

    SAG-AFTRA Commercial Negotiations Set for February

    With no fanfare, SAG-AFTRA and the ad industry have set a mid-February start for negotiations for a successor deal to the union’s master contract, Variety has learned. The current three-year deal — which covers about $1 billion in annual earnings — expires on March 31. SAG-AFTRA and the Joint Policy Committee of the ad industry [...]

  • SONDRA LOCKESONDRA LOCKE - 1986

    Oscar Nominee Sondra Locke Dies at 74

    Actress and director Sondra Locke, who received a supporting actress Oscar nomination in her first movie role for “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter,” died Nov. 3 at 74. The Los Angeles County Public Health Department confirmed her death. She died due to breast and bone cancer, according to Radar Online, which reported that she [...]

  • Clint Eastwood and Alison Eastwood'The Mule'

    Clint Eastwood: Why Alison Eastwood Came Out of Acting Retirement for Her Dad

    Clint Eastwood’s daughter Alison Eastwood was done with acting after appearing in 2014’s “Finding Harmony.” Or so she thought. It was a Friday night and she and her husband were heading to dinner when her father’s producer Sam Moore called. “He [says], ‘You know, your dad wants you to do this film,” Alison recalls. “I [...]

  • 'Dead Women Walking' Review: Uncompromising, Powerful

    Film Review: 'Dead Women Walking'

    The sober and gripping “Dead Women Walking” focuses on the final days of a series of female inmates facing the death sentence. Divided into nine chapters, each inching its way inexorably closer to the moment of execution, the drama turns the fragmentation of its approach to a powerful advantage. Not only do the individual stories [...]

  • Sam Mendes

    Sam Mendes' World War I Drama '1917' Set for Awards-Season Launch on Christmas 2019

    Universal Pictures has given an awards-season release date of Dec. 25, 2019, to Sam Mendes’ World War I drama “1971.” Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Partners is producing “1917” through its DreamWorks Pictures brand. “1917” will open in limited release on Christmas Day then go wide two weeks later on Jan. 10, 2020. Mendes wrote the script [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content