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Box Office: ‘Jackass Forever’ Scores $1.7 Million in Previews, ‘Moonfall’ Opens to $700K

Jackass Forever
Everett Collection

With much of the country bracing for or digging out from a nasty winter storm, two new releases are hoping to provide so much sizzle that moviegoers will brave the ice and snow to hit up their local multiplexes.

In one corner: Lionsgate’s “Moonfall,” a disaster epic from Roland Emmerich, one of the most successful purveyors of cinematic destruction. In the other: Paramount’s “Jackass Forever,” the latest entry in the long-running series in which Johnny Knoxville, Steve-O and Wee Man risk life, limb and nether regions in the service of comedy. “Jackass Forever” scored a stronger Thursday previews showing, netting $1.7 million. The film, which cost a mere $10 million to produce, is expected to $15 million to $20 million from 3,590 North American theaters in its debut.

As for “Moonfall,” which carries a far larger $140 million budget (lunar mayhem doesn’t come cheap), the disaster epic earned $700,000 in previews. It is projected to earn $10 million or $12 million in its inaugural weekend. That’s probably not going to be enough to make “Moonfall” a financial winner, though Emmerich’s films, which include “2012” and “Independence Day,” do tend to play better overseas. The question is how much the bad weather, which is expected to hit the Northeast hard, will impact ticket sales. It’s already depressing grosses. Over 300 theaters were closed on Thursday due to the major storm that moved through the Midwest en route to the East Coast.

“Jackass Forever” is a hit with critics, enjoying a 90% “fresh” on Rotten Tomatoes, while “Moonfall” won’t get a boost from reviews. It only has a 42% “fresh” rating, though some reviewers argued that the film fits firmly in the so-bad-it’s-good category. “Moonfall” stars Halle Berry, Patrick Wilson, John Bradley, Michael Peña and Donald Sutherland.