Box Office Preview: ‘Ocean’s 8’ Places Bets on $35 Million Bow

Sandra Bullock’s badass girl gang is looking to steal the box office crown this weekend.

“Ocean’s 8” is eyeing a domestic debut between $33 million and $40 million when it opens on over 4,000 screens — about 500 more than any of the previous “Ocean’s” movies. The Warner Bros. heist film will get a small head start on Wednesday night, as AMC Theatres is hosting preview screenings in 36 locations as part of a girl’s night out promotion.

A mid-$30s opening should be enough to edge out “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” which has barely held onto the top spot for the last two weeks. If the Disney and Lucasfilm anthology film continues on a similar downward trajectory, it should make between $11 million and $15 million over its third weekend. So far, the tentpole has pocketed $152 million in North America and $115 million overseas.

The projected release for “Ocean’s 8” would be a solid start, given the film’s estimated $70 million price tag. With a somewhat older target audience, its success will likely rely on its longterm playability. The film also has some breathing room as it will be going up against the fourth weekend of “Deadpool 2” and third frame of “Solo,” while “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” doesn’t premiere for another two weeks.

The latest in Steven Soderbergh’s “Ocean’s” franchise was George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Matt Damon’s “Ocean’s Thirteen” in 2007. That film and its predecessors, “Ocean’s Eleven” and “Ocean’s Twelve,” each bowed between $36 million and $39 million. In total, the trilogy collected over $1.2 billion worldwide.

The upcoming spinoff, produced by Village Roadshow Pictures, stars Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson, Rihanna, Helena Bonham Carter, and Awkwafina. Bullock plays the estranged sister of Danny Ocean (Clooney’s character in the remakes). After getting released from jail, she attempts to pull off a heist at New York City’s annual Met Gala.

Two years ago this weekend, Sony’s all-female reboot of “Ghostbusters” launched with $46 million. The sci-fi comedy — starring Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones — struggled to sustain momentum at the box office and tapered off to $128 million in North America. With hefty production costs and expensive marketing, the remake cost Sony around $50 million.

The latest “Ocean’s” installment opens against two R-rated entries — A24’s thriller “Hereditary” and Global Road Entertainment’s “Hotel Artemis.” Both films are looking at mid-single digit debuts between $5 million and $9 million.

Hereditary,” starring Toni Collette, launches on approximately 2,800 screens. Written and directed by first-time filmmaker Ari Aster, “Hereditary” has been a critical favorite since it premiered in the Midnight section at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and is currently at 93% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. The horror film, also featuring Alex Wolff, Milly Shapiro, Ann Dowd, Gabriel Byrne, follows a family that begins to unravel cryptic and terrifying secrets about their ancestry following the death of their reclusive grandmother.

Meanwhile, “Hotel Artemis” debuts in about 2,340 locations. Jodie Foster and Sterling K. Brown star in the action thriller set in the near future. Foster plays a nurse who runs a secret hospital for criminals in Los Angeles. Drew Pearce, who wrote “Iron Man 3” and “Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation,” is making his directorial debut. Sofia Boutella, Jeff Goldblum, Brian Tyree Henry, Jenny Slate, Zachary Quinto, Charlie Day and Dave Bautista round out the cast.

In limited release, Focus Features is opening “Won’t You Be My Neighbor.” The documentary on the life and legacy of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” host Fred Rogers opens on 29 screens. Social media users have been building buzz, sharing how the film spurred them to tears, and it has a 98% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.

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