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Whisper Numbers: Pain & Gain muscles in on the box office

The Dwayne Johnson box office tour of 2013 continues as [TROCK] opens his third movie in 3 months, with another on the way in May. To top it all off, The Rock recently performed in Wrestlemania where he dropped the WWE Championship title. While he risks over-exposure, it shouldn’t affect the R-rated action comedy Pain & Gain [PAING], which also stars Mark Wahlberg [MWAHL]. Although his last film Broken City managed just $9.5 million over the MLK Jr. holiday weekend, Wahlberg had two R-rated hits in 2012 with Contraband and Ted. Johnson’s last solo effort Snitch debuted with $13.7 million in February, while G.I. JOE: Retaliation opened over $40 million. In Pain & Gain, the two likeable stars play bodybuilders who get in over their heads in an extortion scheme. The Paramount release has all the trademark flash of director Michael Bay [MBAY], who returns to his Bad Boys roots after completing the blockbuster Transformers trilogy. The film has received mixed reviews, which wouldn’t matter to the target audience of young guys.  Opening at 3277 locations, Pain & Gain may lift upwards of $22 million.

Tom Cruise proved he still got it by opening the original sci-fi film Oblivion [OBLVN].  With mixed word of mouth even amongst its target audience, Oblivion could slide 45% to about $19 million. The baseball drama 42 [42] looks to drive in another $11 million in its third outing.

With all the testosterone at the box office, Lionsgate counterprograms the weekend with The Big Wedding [TBWED]. The romantic comedy features an all-star cast led by Katherine Heigl [KHEIG], Amanda Seyfried [ASEYF], Robert De Niro [RDENI] and Diane Keaton [DKEAT], though none are a reliable draw.  Buzz has been light on the film whose release was delayed from last October.  Unfortunately, the R-rating will limit the audience to older women, a hard to reach demographic that do not rush out opening weekend.  Lionsgate is even promoting a two for one ticket deal, further demonstrating a lack of confidence in the product. Playing in 2633 theaters, The Big Wedding may collect $11 million.

After 3 weeks of limited release where it has earned $1 million, The Company You Keep [COYKP] expands wide into 807 theaters. Shia LaBeouf [SLABE] plays a reporter out to expose the true identity of a lawyer and single father who was a former 1970s antiwar radical activist, played by Robert Redford [RREDF]. The Company You Keep could uncover $2.5 million.

That’s the whisper from the virtual trading floor.



Tag(s): TROCK, PAING, MWAHL, MBAY, OBLVN, 42, TBWED, KHEIG, ASEYF, RDENI, DKEAT, COYKP, SLABE, RREDF

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By Box Office Whisperer on Thursday, April 25, 2013 @ 03:25 PM 3387 views

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