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Whisper Numbers: Monsters and Zombies attack

Two new wide releases open in what is shaping up to be a bountiful box office weekend. This year’s Pixar animated entry is Monsters University [MONS2], the prequel to 2001’s Monsters, Inc.that opened with $62.6 million. The G-rated film explored how Mike and Sulley met in college before becoming scare-mongers. The last two Pixar releases, 2012’s Brave and 2011’s Cars 2 both opened at $66 million, while 2010’s Toy Story 3 triumphed with $110 million. Although not as beloved as the Toy Story franchise, Monsters is much better regarded than the Cars series. There is little competition for the family audience and parents trust the Disney-Pixar brand. The college setting should appeal to older teens and young adults. Enrolling in 4004 theaters, Monsters University could walk out with $82 million.

After an opening weekend mostly to itself, Man of Steel [SUPR2] faces two heavyweight competitions. While most moviegoers enjoyed the new Superman, there is a vocal minority of fans that didn’t like some of the changes made to the well-known mythology. Man of Steel is likely to drop more than 50% in its second weekend to a still stellar $53 million.

Brad Pitt [BPITT] stars in his first summer blockbuster in years with the action adventure World War Z [WWARZ], loosely based on the best-selling Max Brooks novel. Directed by Marc Forster [MFORS], the $200 million production has been beset with problems, delays, and reshoots that fueled negative publicity. However, Paramount has turned the tide against the bad buzz with advanced screenings, many personally attended by Pitt, and a marketing campaign that avoided any mention of zombies. By focusing on Pitt saving his family and all mankind, World War Z opens up to a broader audience beyond horror fans. The PG-13 rated final product has even earned mostly rave reviews from critics. Spreading into 3607 theaters, World War Z could round up $51 million.

Despite opening against Man of Steel, This Is The End [JSVSA] connected moviegoers looking for R-rated laughs. Since it opened mid-week, This Is The End should hold better than 50% in its second session for about $11 million.

A24 expands The Bling Ring [BLINR] moderately wide into 650 theaters after averaging $42,507 per theater in its debut last week. Emma Watson [EMWAT] stars in the real-life based drama about a gang of young celebrity-obsessed burglars. With mostly positive reviews, the Sofia Coppola [SCOPP] directed film should take away $3 million.

That’s the whisper from the virtual trading floor.



Tag(s): MONS2, SUPR2, BPITT, WWARZ, MFORS, JSVSA, BLINR, EMWAT, SCOPP

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By Box Office Whisperer on Thursday, June 20, 2013 @ 03:57 PM 3097 views

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