After a four year absence from theaters, former box office champ Will Smith [WSMIT] returns to reclaim his throne with Men in Black 3 [MIB3], the sci-fi series which itself was last seen ten years ago. Smith’s last summer hit was the $62.6 million opening Hancock in 2008. Since that time, the multiplex has been taken over by comic superheroes and young adult fantasy adaptations. Do today’s young moviegoers still identify with Smith and a decade-old franchise? Have older fans already forgotten the forgettable Men in Black 2? Reviews have mostly been positive on the third film, which involves time traveling back to the 1960s. Indiana Jones was able to bank on nostalgia several Memorial weekends ago even with a less than stellar fourth film. Beaming into 4248 theaters, Men in Black 3 may zap $80 million over the four day holiday weekend.
After dominating the box office for three weeks, The Avengers [AVNGR] will finish out of the top spot for the first time. Marvel’s superheroes will cross the $500 million milestone with around $38 million over the holiday weekend.
Battleship [BTSHP] sank as moviegoers were unable to ovecome its boardgame origin to give the film a chance. With little buzz, Battleship may take in $16 million during its second round.
Warner Bros. counters the holiday weekend with a rare horror offering in Chernobyl Diaries [CHRNB]. The R-rated found footage film is set in the real-life abandoned Ukrainian city near the nuclear meltdown disaster. With most of the expensive blockbusters underperforming, the cheap horror film may appeal to the young adult target audience. Checking into 2433 theaters, Chernobyl Diaries may digest $15 million over the 4-day period.
After 3 weeks of limited releases, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel [TBEMH] expands wide into 1233 theaters. The comedy has already earned more than $8 million indicating favorable word of mouth amongst older adult moviegoers. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel could book another $6 million over the long Memorial Weekend.
That’s the whisper from the trading floor.
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