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Whisper Numbers: Weekend box office adds Salt to counter Inception.

The weekend box office adds some female headliners this week in the shape of megastar Angelina Jolie [AJOLI] and tween newcomer Selena Gomez [SGOME].  Will the estrogen power be enough to counter the testosterone driven Inception [INCPT]?  Christopher Nolan’s [CNOLA] sci-fi thriller has generation the kind of buzz not heard from since The Matrix a decade ago.   The intricately constructed film invites must-see word of mouth and even repeat viewing.   Inception has already banked impressive weekday numbers and looks to decline less than 35% this weekend.  Inception should repeat at the top of the box office with at least $40 million.

Jolie stars as a female spy in the action thriller Salt [ESALT].  Her Bond/Bourne-esque role was originally set up for Tom Cruise.  Jolie has already proven to be a bankable action star with Tomb Raider, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, and Wanted.  However, Salt is an original property in which Jolie will carry on her own.  Nevertheless, the biggest female star in the world should have no problem attracting an audience to the PG-13 rated popcorn film.  Sony could even benefit from the real life discovery of a Russian femme fatale mole.  Breaking into 3612 theaters, Salt could take in around $36 million.

Universal’s summer hit Despicable Me [DESME] has been a monster hold at the box office.  The animated film should command another $19 million from the minions. 

Disney Channel star Gomez toplines Ramona and Beezus [RMONA], a G-rated film targeted at young girls and their parents. The Ramona book series does not have the fandom of Fox’s previous book series adaptation, The Diary of a Wimpy Kid, which debuted at $22 million. Opening in 2719 theaters, Ramona and Beezus may have to settle with about $11 million.

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice [SORAP] failed to launch another franchise for Disney and producer Jerry Bruckheimer.  The story was too similar to every other fantasy that came before it.   The Sorcerer’s Apprentice looks to drop to $9 million in its sophomore session.

That’s the whisper from the trading floor.


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By Box Office Whisperer on Thursday, July 22, 2010 @ 03:40 PM 2767 views

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