Hot on the heels of winning a Golden Globe for her performance in the unconventional thriller Black Swan, Natalie Portman [NPORT] stars in the conventional romantic comedy No Strings Attached [NSATA] opposite Ashton Kutcher [AKUTC]. The R-rated film examines whether a man and a woman can have a sex-only relationship and still stay friends. Paramount opens the film ahead of Sony’s Friends with Benefits [FWBFT], which has a similar premise not to mention its original title. As the widest new release this weekend, the romantic comedy should be the first choice for most young couples. Opening in 3018 theaters, No Strings Attached could hook up around $20 million.
Seth Rogen [SROGE] successfully opened The Green Hornet [GHRNT] atop the box office last weekend. The male-targeted action film is likely to drop 50% in its second session which would rein in around $16 million.
The Dilemma [DILEM] failed to attract the younger fans of its stars Vince Vaughn [VVUAG] and Kevin James [KJAME]. Their older fans could still give the comedic drama a chance in its second weekend. The Dilemma could decay 45% to $10 million.
Three Oscar-hopefuls will fight for the fourth spot. True Grit, The King’s Speech and the previously mentioned Black Swan are all likely to earn between $7-8 million.
The old fashioned epic The Way Back [WAYBC] hopes to appeal to older moviegoers. However, its award buzz has not materialized and its marketing has been light. Landing in over 650 theaters, The Way Back may make no more than $3 million in its first weekend.
That’s the whisper from the trading floor.
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