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‘Hotel Transylvania 3’ to Rock the Box Office While ‘Skyscraper’ Falls Short

Sony’s “Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation” is heading for a box office victory while Dwayne Johnson’s “Skyscraper” is badly under-performing at the North American box office, early estimates showed Friday.

“Hotel Transylvania 3” will finish in the middle of forecasts with projections between $40 million to $44 million at 4,267 sites, while “Skyscraper” should finish at about $23 million — well below recent projections in the $33 million to $40 million range. “Skyscraper” looked likely to finish in a distant third place behind the second weekend of Disney-Marvel’s “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” which is expected to decline 59% to $31 million.

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation” is the first animated comedy to open since Disney-Pixar’s “Incredibles 2” launched on June 15. “Incredibles 2” has become a smash hit and should finish the weekend at about $534 million domestically.

The downbeat performance of “Skyscraper,” opening at 3,782 North American locations, may have resulted from the frequency of Johnson-starring roles in multiplexes this year. Johnson’s comedy-adventure “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” was a major hit, earning $961.8 million at the worldwide box office for Sony. His action-adventure “Rampage” performed respectably during the spring with $425.7 million worldwide for Warner Bros.; it opened with $35.7 million domestically, which was well above first-day estimates.

“Skyscraper” stars Johnson as a former FBI agent and amputee who is head of security at Hong Kong’s tallest skyscraper. When the 240-story building comes under attack by terrorists and Johnson’s character finds himself framed — with his family trapped above the fire line — he responds by climbing 100-story tower cranes. “Central Intelligence” helmer Rawson Marshall Thurber directs “Skyscraper.”

“Skyscraper” opens day-and-date in 56 international markets and launches in China on July 20. It carries a current Rotten Tomatoes score of 49%. Johnson’s longtime collaborator, Beau Flynn, produced the pic alongside Seven Bucks partners Hiram Garcia, Dany Garcia, Wendy Jacobson, Eric McLeod, and Eric Hedayat.

“Hotel Transylvania 3” appears to be heading for the same range as its predecessors. The first “Hotel Transylvania” opened with $42.5 million in North America in 2012 on its way to $358.4 million at the worldwide box office. In 2015, “Hotel Transylvania 2” launched with $48.5 million domestically and wound up with $473.2 million worldwide.

The film is directed by Genndy Tartakovsky, and written by Tartakovsky and Michael McCullers. It focuses on Dracula, Mavis, Johnny, and the rest of the family taking a vacation on the Monster Cruise Ship, where Dracula becomes attracted to the ship’s mysterious captain. The voice cast includes Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, David Spade, Steve Buscemi, Keegan-Michael Key, Molly Shannon, Fran Drescher, and Mel Brooks.

“Hotel Transylvania 3” has the highest Rotten Tomatoes score of the trio, averaging 59%. The first film landed a 44% rating, and the second fared slightly better with 55%.

Ant-Man and the Wasp,” which debuted with $75.8 million last weekend, should finish the weekend with about $134 million domestically in its first 10 days. Disney’s fifth weekend of “Incredibles 2” and Universal’s fourth frame of “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” will be battling for fourth place in the $15 million range.

The overall U.S. summer box office is up an impressive 12.8% to $2.69 billion through July 11, according to comScore, while the year-to-date box office rose 8% to $6.63 billion.

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