And we’re back to a weekend sans superhero movies. We’ve got two new wide releases making their debut both of which will likely struggle to fight off unhappy critics and powerful box office veterans. Cars 2 may be the one with the weaker reviews, but a whopping 4,115-theater count and the fact that it’s a sequel, will certainly give it the edge over Bad Teacher. Back in 2006, Cars opened to the tune of $60.1 million. Can its predecessor achieve the same? It looks like it. In 2008, the first Kung Fu Panda snagged a total of $60.2 million during week one, but Kung Fu Panda 2 started its run with only $47.7 million, and that’s with better reviews and a bigger cast than Cars 2. However, Cars 2 won’t have The Hangover Part II to contend with. In the end, Lightning McQueen and the gang will likely finish the first leg of their box office race with about $60 million.
As for Bad Teacher, the fact that moviegoers have likely simmered down from The Hangover Part II and are craving comedy yet again will work in its favor. Sure Cameron Diaz isn’t much of a box office commodity anymore, but Jason Segel and Justin Timberlake could help to give the film an edge. Should Bad Teacher put up a similar performance to the summer 2010 comedy, Get Him to the Greek, which started with a $6,515 per theater average, it could be looking at a $20 million opening weekend.
And now it’s back to superhero land, or Oa for that matter, as Green Lantern is about to soar into week two. Considering Green Lantern started right in line with X-Men: First Class, there’s no reason to think it’ll drop any more or any less. Should that be the case, Green Lantern will lose about 55% of its profits and take in $24 million, just edging out Bad Teacher for the second position. While both Super 8 and Mr. Popper’s Penguins will certainly assume subsequent rankings, it should be a tight race for that fourth spot. Last weekend, Super 8 came in with $21.5 million while Mr. Popper took $18.4 million, but the fact that Mr. Popper will be contending with a newer and hotter kid-friendly commodity, Cars 2, and that Super 8 took a surprisingly minimal week one to two fall, could make the fourth spot an easy grab for Super 8. Ultimately, it looks to be Super 8 with $12 million and Mr. Popper with $9 million.
There could also be a bit of a battle for the sixth spot between The Hangover Part II and X-Men: First Class. Should The Hangover Part II continue its 43% loss trend, it’ll finish week five with about $6 million. As for First Class, its percent change has been leveling out, going from 56.2% to 50.5%. If the trend continues, it could wind up with a 45% week three to four loss, which would leave it with $6.5 million, barely edging out The Hangover.
In terms of the final three spots on the top ten, Kung Fu Panda 2, Bridesmaids and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides should, yet again, fall right in line. Kung Fu Panda 2 is trending towards a hefty drop courtesy of Cars 2 and could lose half of its week four profits, giving it about $4.5 million for week five. Bridesmaids, on the other hand, will continue to take baby steps down, albeit a slightly bigger one this time around thanks to Bad Teacher, losing about 40% and earning another $4 million. Lastly, On Stranger Tides is poised to wave goodbye to about 45% of its week five earnings, ultimately making its final showing on the top ten list with about $3.5 million.
1. Cars 2
2. Green Lantern
3. Bad Teacher
4. Super 8
5. Mr. Popper’s Penguins
6. X-Men: First Class
7. The Hangover Part II
8. Kung Fu Panda 2
10. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
By Perri Nemiroff (via Box Office Mojo)