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Whisper Numbers: Harry Potter casts spell on moviegoers.



The beginning of the end for Warner Bros.’ fantasy franchise commences as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I [HPOT7] arrives in theaters. Now that character developments are over and done with, it’s time for the teen wizard to lead the battle against the forces of evil. Are box office records within reach? The previous two installments Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince are not apt comparisons as they opened on a Wednesday during summer. The last film to open on a Friday in November, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, scored $102 million in 2005. Deathly Hallows should surpass that mark easily perhaps in two days given the strong advance sales at higher ticket prices. Opening in 4125 theaters, Deathly Hallows could conjure upwards of $126 million.

Megamind [MEGAM] has proven to have staying power. With another 35% decline, the animated film would bank another $19 million.

Unstoppable [USTOP] opened along the lines of previous Denzel Washington [DWASH] films. The action thriller should remain the choice for adults not interested in fantasy. With positive word of mouth, Unstoppable should tail off around 45% to $13 million.

Washington’s American Gangster co-star Russell Crowe [RCROW] debuts his own action thriller The Next Three Days [N3DAY]. Elizabeth Banks [EBANK] plays his wife who he breaks out of prison and together become fugitives on the run. Aside from the big-budgeted Robin Hood, Crowe’s contemporary films usually open in the mid-teens. Without much buzz, Lionsgate may have to settle for less. The PG-13 rated The Next Three Days may earn $10 million from 2564 locations.

In its third weekend, Due Date [DUDAT] looks to drop to fourth at around $7 million. Between the two sophomore films, Morning Glory [MORNG] will hold better than Skyline [SKYLN] and finish with $5.5 million versus $4.5 million.

That’s the whisper from the trading floor.



Tag(s): HPOT7, MEGAM, USTOP, DWASH, RCROW, N3DAY, EBANK, DUDAT, MORNG, SKYLN

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By Box Office Whisperer on Thursday, November 18, 2010 @ 04:58 PM        1549 views


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