Without a major action release hitting theaters this weekend, musical "Rock of Ages" is in good position to challenge for the top box office spot, though it will have to hold off "Madagascar 3" as the popular animated film continues to bring in big numbers. Also hitting theaters this week will be Adam Sandler's "That's My Boy," an R-rated comedy co-starring Andy Samberg from the cast of Saturday Night Live.
Based on a very popular Broadway musical of the same title, "Rock of Ages" starts with a large built-in audience and boasts some popular actors in its cast, most notably Tom Cruise, Russell Brand and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Music from the 1980s has seen somewhat of a renaissance in recent years, and it looks like distributor Warner Brothers is in perfect position to take advantage of the trend. After getting his start in iconic 1980s films like "Top Gun" and "Risky Business," Cruise also seems to be the perfect fit to help get audiences back to the theater for "Rock of Ages."
But even with a familiar concept and a popular cast, "Rock of Ages" isn't likely to post one of the bigger openings of the summer. Musicals like "Chicago," "Hairspray" and "Mamma Mia!" have proven to be enormously profitable, though none put up even a $30 million opening weekend; "High School Musical 3: Senior Year" holds the top musical opening ever with $42 million, with no other musicals coming close. Still, with minimal competition and more male friendly subject matter than other recent musicals, "Rock of Ages" should be able to top the charts with somewhere around $32 to $35 million this weekend at roughly 3,350 venues.
Even if "Rock of Ages" does post a big opening, however, "Madagascar 3" still has the potential to land as the top box office draw for the second consecutive weekend. The Paramount/Dreamworks distribution opened with a solid $60 million last weekend, with numbers remaining very strong during the week as well. With no new family competition, "Madagascar 3" could see a relatively small dip from its opening totals and beat out "Rock of Ages," propelling its 10-day domestic total close to $120 million.
While "Madagascar 3" and "Rock of Ages" battle for the top box office slot, R-rated comedy "That's My Boy" could also post solid numbers for distributor Sony. Though Adam Sandler has faced his fair share of criticism, including some of the worst reviews of the year for his 2011 release "Jack and Jill," his movies continue to be very profitable in theaters. With "The Dictator" likely dipping out of the top ten, "That's My Boy" also has virtually no competition for adults looking for comedy, opening the door for another opening of more than $25 million for Sandler; since "The Waterboy" opened in 1998, Sandler has had 13 releases post openings of $25 million or more, making him easily the most bankable comedic actor around. Look for "That's My Boy" to finish somewhere in the range of $25 to $27 million this weekend as it debuts at an estimated 3,000 total theaters.
Heading into its second weekend in theaters, sci-fi-horror release "Prometheus" is also in a good position to post some more decent numbers due to a lack of new genre competition. Though some adults will check out "That's My Boy" and "Rock of Ages," "Prometheus" boasts some solid critical and audience support, which should help it cross $25 million for the second straight weekend. "Prometheus" should come close to $100 million domestically by the end of the weekend and has already made a dent overseas, pushing its worldwide total past $150 million in less than a week.
Next weekend, animated feature, "Brave" is in great position to take over the family demographic and land atop the box office charts once again for animation studio Pixar; each of Pixar's 12 features since 1995 have topped the box office charts, with the last four each surpassing $60 million in their first weekend. R-rated releases "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" and "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World" will also hit theaters looking to scoop up adult moviegoers, though they will be aiming at mostly separate demographics.
RTT Box Office Predictions for 6/15/12 - 6/17/12 (In Millions):
1. Rock of Ages (Warner Brothers/New Line): $34
2. Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted (Paramount/Dreamworks): $33
3. That's My Boy (Sony): $27
4. Prometheus (Fox): $26
5. Snow White and the Huntsman (Universal): $11
6. Men in Black III (Sony/Columbia): $6.7
7. The Avengers (Disney): $5.9
8. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (Fox Searchlight): $1.7
9. What to Expect When You're Expecting (Lionsgate): $1.3
10. Moonrise Kingdom (Focus): $1.2
by RTT Staff Writer
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