×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Box Office Preview: ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ Looks to Lure Kids as ‘Black Panther’ Stays Muscular

Disney will be facing off against itself at the North American box office this weekend as “A Wrinkle in Time” opens against the fourth weekend of Marvel’s “Black Panther.”

Black Panther” shows no signs of slowing down its box office reign, as estimates show Ryan Coogler’s tentpole has a good chance of coming out on top against Ava DuVernay’s time-travel fantasy, which is targeted to hard-to-track younger filmgoers.

The latest tracking for “Wrinkle” projects an opening weekend of $30 to $38 million at 3,980 North American locations. That’s slightly lower than initial estimates assessed, which showed a range between $34 to $37 million. “Black Panther” could bring $35 to $40 million in its fourth weekend.

Numerous schools start their spring vacations this week, giving PG-rated “A Wrinkle in Time” a few weeks to lure young audiences in the weeks leading up to Easter, which is on April 1 this year.

“A Wrinkle in Time” is based on Madeleine L’Engle’s 1962 children’s novel, which follows a group of children as they travel through time and strange worlds to find their missing father. The film boasts a star-studded cast including Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Zach Galifianakis, Chris Pine, Mindy Kaling and Gugu Mbatha-Raw.

Four years ago, the first installment of the young adult sci-fi franchise “Divergent” opened March 21 to $54 million. Another Disney title, the live-action “Jungle Book” remake, debuted in April 2016 with an impressive $103 million.

“With the first billion dollar February now on the books and the year-to-date advantage over last year at nearly 11%, the box office gravy train keeps rolling along,” Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at comScore, said. “Disney’s ‘A Wrinkle In Time’ will have to contend with a formidable fourth weekend for stablemate ‘Black Panther’ that is poised for yet another solid frame that could land the two films in photo finish for the top spot.”

Meanwhile, “Black Panther” continues to break box office records, with a domestic total of $506.4 million making it the ninth-highest grossing film in North America after only 18 days. The third weekend of “Black Panther” showed only a 41% decline for the third-best third weekend of all time at $66.3 million, trailing only “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and “Avatar.”

If “Black Panther’s” decline is similar to last weekend, a weekend of about $40 million would result in the third-highest fourth weekend of all time, following “Avatar” with $50.3 million and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” with $42.4 million. “The Avengers” currently holds the third spot with $36.7 million.

Three other titles — “Gringo,” “The Hurricane Heist,” and “The Strangers: Prey at Night” — are each pacing to open with less than $10 million at about 2,400 sites.

Aviron Pictures’ “The Strangers: Prey at Night” is showing the strongest forecast of the three, with an opening looking the $7-$8 million range. Set in a secluded mobile home park, the horror sequel to 2008’s “The Strangers” is directed by Johannes Roberts, and stars Christina Hendricks, Martin Henderson, Bailee Madison, and Lewis Pullman.

Entertainment Studios’ “The Hurricane Heist” sees forecasts of around $7 million from an estimated $35 million budget. Directed by Rob Cohen, the bank robbery thriller follows a band of tech hackers who plan to use a Category 5 hurricane to cover their tracks as they execute a $600 million bank robbery. The cast includes Toby Kebbell, Maggie Grace, Ryan Kwanten, and Ralph Ineson.

That leaves Amazon Studios and STX Films’ action comedy “Gringo,” which is aiming for approximately $5 million. Nash Edgerton’s film features David Oyelowo as a businessman who works for a company that has developed the “Weed Pill.” He is sent to Mexico to handle the manufacturing of the product, but while out partying, he ends up getting kidnapped by a drug cartel. Charlize Theron, Joel Edgerton, Amanda Seyfried, and Thandie Newton round out the cast.

Also premiering this weekend is Focus Features’ thriller “Thoroughbreds,” opening on 549 screens. Anya Taylor-Joy and Olivia Cooke portray childhood friends who reconnect in suburban Connecticut after years of growing apart. Cory Finley makes his directing debut with the film that features Anton Yelchin in his final on-screen role. The actor died at age 26 in a freak accident in 2016.

More Film

  • Gary Hustwit Bob Greenberg, Toshiko MoriBob

    Why 'Rams' Director Gary Hustwit Doesn't Want Studios to Buy His Films

    Most filmmakers dream of scoring a big studio deal, but not Gary Hustwit. The “Helvetica” director applies a “do it yourself” model to the release of his movies. “Rams,” his recent documentary about German industrial designer Dieter Rams, is Hustwit’s latest venture into self-distribution. “I don’t want to be paying someone else’s overhead,” said Hustwit. [...]

  • Ventana Sur: Overview of 2018’s PCI

    Ventana Sur: PCI Showcases the Diversity of Argentine Cinema

    BUENOS AIRES — Mario Vargas Llosa, the great Peruvian novelist, once wrote that reality in Latin America is too compelling to ever be ignored in its fiction. Yet, as WWII raged, Jorge Luis Borges, perhaps the greatest of Argentine writers, pointedly published “Ficciones,” fantasy tales, often philosophical speculation given narrative form. If this year’s PCI [...]

  • Moroccan director Meryem Benm'Barekposes during the

    Young French Cinema Program to Showcase 12 New Films in the U.S.

    Clément Cogitore’s “Braguino,” Meryem Benm’Barek’s (pictured) “Sofia” and Marie Losier’s “Cassandro the Exotico!” are among the 12 recent French movies which will play as part of the Young French Cinema Program organized by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the U.S. and UniFrance. “Braguino” is a documentary feature about two feuding families living [...]

  • Woolsey Fire Malibu

    Many Malibu Areas Still Off-Limits for Filming After Fire

    The California Film Commission has maintained its ban on filming in several Malibu areas hit by the massive Woolsey fire in Southern California last month. The commission announced Tuesday that due to continued clean-up and repair work along Pacific Coast Highway, permits for filming on the highway are not being issued at this time. PCH [...]

  • Against the Clock

    Film News Roundup: Andy Garcia's Spy Thriller 'Against the Clock' Bought by Gravitas

    In today’s film news roundup, Andy Garcia’s spy thriller is sold, “Battlestar Galactica” gets a screenwriter, and Brooklyn Decker gets an award. ACQUISITION Gravitas Ventures has acquired North American rights to spy thriller “Against the Clock,” starring Andy Garcia, Dianna Agron (“Glee”), and Justin Bartha, Variety has learned exclusively. The film, formerly titled “Headlock,” is [...]

  • 'Pacific Rim Uprising' film premiere

    John Boyega in Talks to Star in Legal Drama 'A Naked Singularity'

    “Star Wars” actor John Boyega is in talks to star in the legal drama “A Naked Singularity” with Ridley Scott’s Scott Free Productions on board to produce. The movie is based on Sergio De La Pava’s debut novel, which centers on a successful New York public defender whose life begins to unravel after he loses [...]

  • Penny Marshall Dead Obit

    Remembering Penny Marshall, Who Forged Her Own Path and Paved the Way for Others

    She was a natural comedian — fearless and funny, willing to trade on her natural Bronx brogue to craft a sassy and street-wise character that was tailor-made for sitcoms. But Penny Marshall, who died Monday night at the age of 75, proved throughout her long career that she had so much more in the way [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content