Four new films and a wide expansion compete for moviegoers’ attention in a crowded weekend at the box office. Clint Eastwood [CEAST] may come out slightly ahead of the pack with the baseball drama Trouble with the Curve [TCURV]. Eastwood was much maligned for his speech at the Republican National Convention, but the much talked about routine brought awareness to his first starring role since 2008’s Gran Torino. That film was a $148 million hit, which indicated the 82-year-old still has legions of fans. Co-stars Amy Adams [AMADA] and Justin Timberlake [JTIMB] should help broaden the demographic for the PG-13 rated sports movie. Playing in 3212 theaters, Trouble with the Curve could hit $15 million.
Relativity’s House at the End of the Street [ENDST] will test the drawing power of Jennifer Lawrence [JLAWR], coming off the blockbuster The Hunger Games. The PG-13 rated thriller is right in the wheelhouse of its target audience of female teens and young women. Breaking into 3083 theaters, House at the End of the Street may sell for $14 million.
Jake Gyllenhaal [JGYLL] and Michael Pena [MPENA] play LAPD officers in the R-rated actioner End of Watch [ENDWT] shot in a gritty style similar to the TV show COPS. Open Road has marketed the film heavily to sports fans as well as the Hispanic market. The film has earned excellent reviews, which could even bring in the high-brow crowd. End of Watch looks to roll up $14 million from 2730 locations.
Lionsgate’s Dredd 3D [DREDD] stars Karl Urban [KURBA] in the role Sylvester Stallone played in 1995’s Judge Dredd. The R-rated sci-fi actioner’s appeal appears limited to male fans of the genre, where it has to compete against Resident Evil: Retribution [RESE5]. Presiding 2506 theaters, Dredd 3D may execute just $10 million. Resident Evil: Retribution suffered from franchise fatigue as the fifth installment had the worst debut since the original film. The sequel looks to tumble 60% to $8 million in its second weekend.
After a record per theater average opening, The Master [MASTR] expands wide into 788 theaters. Paul Thomas Anderson’s [PTAND] period drama about a Scientology-like religious movement will attract moviegoers eager to check out the first buzzworthy film of the award season. The Master may collect $7 million this weekend.
That’s the whisper from the virtual trading floor.
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