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Box Office: ‘Jumanji’ Outpaces ‘Insidious 4,’ ‘Star Wars’

Sony’s “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” is heading for a clear victory over “Insidious: The Last Key” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” this weekend at the North American box office, early estimates showed Friday.

Projections indicate that “Jumanji” will take in around $25 million at 3,765 locations in its third weekend, while the opening frame of the fourth “Insidious” installment is battling “The Last Jedi” for second in the $20 million to $22 million range.

“Jumanji” has earned $202.4 million in North America in its first 15 days and more than $200 million in its foreign run, reinforcing the drawing power of stars Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart. “The Last Jedi” has hit $549.8 million in three weeks, the sixth-highest domestic total of all time, and has won three straight weekends at the North American box office, including scoring the second-largest opening of all time at $220 million on Dec. 15-17.

“Insidious: The Last Key” launched with a solid $2 million at 2,220 North American sites on Thursday night, lifting its Friday total to as much as $10 million. The horror movie appears to be performing above recent expectations, which had been in the $16 million to $19 million range.

Insidious: The Last Key” is latest horror title from Blumhouse Productions, which delivered low-cost horror hits last year for Universal with “Split,” “Get Out,” and “Happy Death Day.” The franchise dates back to 2010 with “Insidious,” followed by “Insidious: Chapter 2” in 2013 and “Insidious: Chapter 3” in 2015. The three films have grossed a collective $357 million worldwide.

Lin Shaye, who has starred in all three films, returns in “Insidious: The Last Key” as a parapsychologist whose haunted childhood comes to threaten her family and home in a follow-up to the events in “Insidious: Chapter 3.” The film is directed by Adam Robitel from a script by co-creator Leigh Whannell, who also wrote the first three movies and directed “Insidious: Chapter 3.”

It’s produced by “Insidious” regulars Jason Blum, Oren Peli, and co-creator James Wan. “Insidious: The Last Key” was produced by Sony Pictures (through Stage 6 Films) with Blumhouse. Universal is the U.S. theatrical distributor. Sony Pictures Releasing International will release in the rest of the world.

Fox’s third weekend of “The Greatest Showman” appears to be moving toward fourth place with about $12 million at 3,316 locations, lifting its domestic total to the $75 million range. Universal’s third installment of “Pitch Perfect” should follow in fifth with about $11 million at 3,468 venues for an estimated $85 million total by the end of the weekend.

STXfilms’ poker drama “Molly’s Game,” starring Jessica Chastain, is slated for about $5 million at 1,608 locations in an expansion from 271 sites. The film received a Producers Guild Award nomination on Friday for best film, a day after Aaron Sorkin’s script received a Writers Guild nom for adapted screenplay.

Steven Spielberg’s “The Post,” which also received a PGA nomination on Friday, is expected to continue its strong performance in a nine-screen platform release with at least $1 million this weekend after grossing more than $2 million since launching on Dec. 22. Fox is adding 27 outlets Friday and then going wide with the journalism drama on Jan. 12.

The first weekend of 2018 appears to be on track for a similar result to the first frame of 2017, when three movies finished between $20 million and $25 million. “Hidden Figures” won that frame with $22.8 million, edging the fourth weekend of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” with $22.1 million and the third weekend of “Sing” with $20.7 million.

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