Box Office Guru Preview

Hellboy Shoots to Conquer Cinemas

by | July 10, 2008 | Comments

For the first time in eleven weeks, Hollywood releases more than two wide openers on the same weekend as a trio of male-driven pictures will invade multiplexes across North America on Friday. Leading the way is the comic book sequel Hellboy II: The Golden Army which looks to become the latest superhero film to bow at number one. Brendan Fraser counters with his own action offering Journey to the Center of the Earth while Eddie Murphy tries to deliver some laughs with the comedy Meet Dave.

The second badass-superhero-with-an-attitude flick in as many weeks hits the multiplexes with Hellboy II which marks the return of Ron Perlman as the devilish crimefighter and Guillermo del Toro behind the camera showing off his inventive imagination with visual effects that leap ahead of those from the last installment. Sony bowed the first Hellboy to $23.2M in April 2004 on its way to a $59M final. It was hardly the type of number that warrants a sequel, but the director’s stock has risen since then and so Universal is the distributor this time around and has included Golden Army in its summer four-pack of action titles designed to boost its marketshare after a slow start to the year.

Reviews have been exceptional and the marketing push has been strong too. Fans of both science fiction and fantasy are likely to be interested here given the starpower of del Toro, plus there is already a cult audience that loved the first film and will be out on the opening weekend for the new tale. In addition, there is intense hunger for The Dark Knight which is still a week away and many comic book fans will try to curb their desires just a bit by taking a ride with Hellboy as they wait. With Wanted, Universal saw how sales can sizzle with a stylish action picture chock full of impressive visual effects. Hellboy II should play to many of the same folks and can skew younger thanks to its PG-13 rating. Genuine excitement should lead to the demon dethroning Hancock after just one week on top. Hellboy II marches into 3,203 theaters on Friday and could debut to around $37M.

Three weeks before he steps back into his comfortable Rick O’Connell role, Brendan Fraser stars in Journey to the Center of the Earth, the first live-action narrative film to be shot in digital 3D. The PG-rated New Line pic, inherited by Warner Bros., should score with young boys and could play to audiences of all ages in search of something new and different when leaving home for big screen entertainment. The pair of H boys will take away much of the action crowd so the competitive environment right now will limit Journey‘s potential. Last November’s animated 3D pic Beowulf bowed to $27.5M partly on the stylish look, and partly on Angelina Jolie‘s starpower. Outside of The Mummy flicks, Fraser doesn’t pull in too much in sales, although in this case he’s in the type of action hero role he can sell best. Reviews have been pretty good which can’t hurt. Descending into 2,811 theaters, Journey to the Center of the Earth might come up with about $17M this weekend.

Not being shown to the press is Eddie Murphy’s latest comedy Meet Dave where the popular comedian plays an alien spaceship as well as the micro-sized captain inside controlling it. The PG-rated film is aiming for a broad audience with its silly and non-offensive humor, but in the end may reach nobody. Early buzz has been negative and although there is awareness out there, overall excitement is low. The studio is putting most of its hopes into its advertising blitz, and of course a giant Eddie head that traveled across the country hoping to generate publicity in lieu of a human actor who could do talk shows and interview appearances. Comedies starring the media-shy Murphy sell based on how funny they look and Meet Dave is more The Adventures of Pluto Nash ($2.2M opening) than Norbit ($34.2M bow). Plus stiff competition from an assortment of better films will have an impact too. Landing in 3,011 theaters, Meet Dave might meet with about $13M.

Hancock flew right to the top spot at the box office all around the world last weekend and now has to face fierce competition from three new wide releases that will each eat away at a portion of Will Smith‘s audience. Add in word-of-mouth that is far from strong and a big drop is guaranteed. Midweek numbers have been solid though with $8.5M on Monday and $7.4M on Tuesday pushing the opening week tally to $119.7M in seven days plus previews.

Smith has enjoyed numerous blockbusters in July and Hancock has generated the best first-week gross of any of them. But that doesn’t mean it’s the most popular. Ticket prices have climbed significantly since 1996 when Independence Day rocked the multiplexes, but the alien smash still attracted more moviegoers than any of his other action offerings from this month.

This weekend, look for Hancock to witness a post-Fourth of July weekend drop similar to those seen by past holiday chart-toppers like Terminator 3 (56%), MIB2 (53%), and War of the Worlds (53%). A 55% stumble for the drunken superhero would result in a weekend take of about $28M which would push Sony’s cume to $161M. That would give the former rapper a stunning fifth consecutive $150M+ blockbuster.

WALL-E has been chugging along collecting cash and rolling its way towards the $200M mark. Two new PG-rated films open on Friday aimed at kids and families so there will be some level of competition. Luckily for Disney and Pixar, neither Journey nor Dave is expected to be a megasmash. A 35% decline for WALL-E could result giving the animated hit about $21M and a cume of $166M.

Universal will see some of the Wanted audience flee to stablemate Hellboy so another big fall is likely. The assassin actioner might fall by 45% to around $11M giving the Jolie joint $111M to date. Get Smart could drop by 40% to $6.5M for a $111M total for Warner Bros. as well.

LAST YEAR: For the third straight frame a franchise action pic debuted midweek ahead of a solid weekend opening. This time it was Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix which landed at number one with $77.1M over three days and a stunning $139.7M across five days. The Warner Bros. blockbuster went on to gross $292M domestically and a towering $938M globally edging out the numbers of the previous installment in the series. Transformers dropped to second but held up well with $37M and a $224M cume. Disney placed third with Ratatouille with $18M, Live Free or Die Hard followed with $11.3M for Fox, and License to Wed rounded out the top five with $7.3M for Warner Bros.

Author: Gitesh Pandya,

Tag Cloud

elevated horror australia Cannes The Purge international Wes Anderson 2016 Binge Guide satire FOX strong female leads streamig travel godzilla Nat Geo saw Mary Tyler Moore Kids & Family streaming sequel HFPA Best Actor 2017 olympics slashers Sony Pictures basketball Universal Pictures latino rotten adaptation Comics on TV laika natural history docuseries feel good hispanic heritage month live event cancelled children's TV TV renewals rom-coms 79th Golden Globes Awards documentary women casting SXSW 2022 Shondaland DGA Year in Review rt labs critics edition Starz Crunchyroll Spike war reviews CW Seed Animation First Reviews Election aapi sitcom diversity Watching Series RT21 SXSW 4/20 Valentine's Day animated Endgame blockbuster Masterpiece Awards Tour American Society of Cinematographers The Walking Dead Sundance WarnerMedia 45 SundanceTV Disney+ Disney Plus USA crime drama Winter TV foreign mockumentary Television Critics Association Universal critics Paramount Plus dc BBC Best Picture Red Carpet leaderboard comedies crime thriller Pride Month Holidays suspense DC Universe Captain marvel TCA Awards Fox Searchlight target scene in color 71st Emmy Awards Rock streaming movies Polls and Games christmas movies Pop jamie lee curtis CMT Mudbound sequels obituary FXX new york Trivia genre Musicals romantic comedy golden globes football news book RT History renewed TV shows Creative Arts Emmys San Diego Comic-Con Action Video Games South by Southwest Film Festival Tokyo Olympics Image Comics Fall TV Netflix Chilling Adventures of Sabrina trophy Country Alien cancelled TV series deadpool YouTube Red kaiju canceled Focus Features HBO Max Netflix Christmas movies The Witch summer TV preview Adult Swim ratings Premiere Dates Classic Film 90s comics gangster TBS ABC Signature Holiday scorecard best Super Bowl tv talk Writers Guild of America biopic 2015 spain Extras 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards finale Spring TV FX on Hulu E! james bond YouTube Premium thriller rt archives AMC Plus Fantasy halloween tv nfl Marvel action-comedy quibi television GoT Broadway CBS TLC directors Musical Showtime Freeform adenture stoner supernatural Character Guide ABC Family indiana jones toronto cancelled TV shows king arthur President reboot films spinoff BET Awards canceled TV shows Shudder The Walt Disney Company adventure superman Indigenous MSNBC halloween TV versus political drama social media Podcast Disney streaming service Paramount Pictures ITV spider-man 73rd Emmy Awards A24 Reality Competition blaxploitation Calendar Walt Disney Pictures Family Stephen King dark fresh critic resources Academy Awards robots IMDb TV comiccon Lionsgate Native Mystery book adaptation Schedule Avengers 2020 hispanic Superheroes mutant popular medical drama ABC stand-up comedy TCA science fiction Trophy Talk telelvision dragons disaster Nominations Black History Month Fargo Tarantino cancelled television Hallmark SDCC politics stop motion Legendary independent Nickelodeon Logo Amazon technology franchise cooking VICE 2018 Bravo Amazon Prime ghosts Best Actress Syfy E3 biography Oscars TIFF summer preview Biopics Geeked Week mission: impossible Summer Star Wars mcc high school TV Land Mary Poppins Returns NYCC witnail MGM NBA romance Funimation CNN space sopranos Hear Us Out Marathons Hulu Comedy Quiz serial killer new star wars movies king kong Chernobyl Columbia Pictures royal family APB a nightmare on elm street twilight Pixar TCA 2017 93rd Oscars Countdown The CW Song of Ice and Fire anime aliens cartoon scary movies cinemax indie kong Horror Mindy Kaling Prime Video psychological thriller cars Baby Yoda GIFs AMC Teen Disney Plus TCA Winter 2020 24 frames YouTube Ovation teaser PlayStation true crime Peacock italian Travel Channel monster movies boxoffice pirates of the caribbean Photos OneApp jurassic park know your critic Hollywood Foreign Press Association Tumblr MTV justice league National Geographic scary singing competition 1990s dexter Arrowverse Acorn TV Television Academy Reality Apple TV Plus black Awards DirecTV Lucasfilm Music vs. movies comic worst Warner Bros. The Arrangement Turner Classic Movies slasher ID 2019 Pet Sematary Lifetime Christmas movies Amazon Studios scene in color film series Apple Food Network 20th Century Fox unscripted doctor who dreamworks LGBT all-time talk show nature Marvel Studios LGBTQ Britbox Toys Vudu dramedy universal monsters archives Sneak Peek rotten movies we love Emmy Nominations anthology Instagram Live Certified Fresh Sundance Now HBO Go Turner Ghostbusters vampires Discovery Channel game show comic books Cosplay miniseries south america X-Men YA Trailer Pop TV Ellie Kemper crime based on movie Christmas FX summer TV movie Lifetime Emmys DC Comics Epix Winners Paramount Network worst movies breaking bad GLAAD PBS BBC One Infographic binge TV One boxing Brie Larson Dark Horse Comics marvel comics IFC Grammys OWN emmy awards comic book movie rt labs screenings series broadcast dogs fast and furious sports nbcuniversal docudrama Anna Paquin Opinion The Academy obi wan Best and Worst psycho Superheroe screen actors guild Tubi video on demand Exclusive Video Esquire Amazon Prime Video dceu wonder woman DC streaming service USA Network marvel cinematic universe game of thrones 21st Century Fox Oscar Rom-Com heist movie Pirates New York Comic Con Women's History Month 007 green book prank Crackle Tomatazos facebook ViacomCBS 94th Oscars Comic Book PaleyFest Marvel Television richard e. Grant toy story what to watch concert criterion composers ESPN TruTV interviews new zealand Disney Channel Star Wars Celebration free movies Spectrum Originals TNT Film classics VOD target Fox News VH1 spanish period drama spider-verse child's play BBC America hidden camera asian-american Drama werewolf japanese 2021 kids live action historical drama batman chucky discovery hollywood Tags: Comedy blockbusters theme song History die hard WGN zero dark thirty Rocketman TV movies Set visit Star Trek documentaries Film Festival superhero golden globe awards BAFTA debate Martial Arts NBC lord of the rings video El Rey Paramount mob legend Interview Heroines A&E TCM spy thriller award winner Black Mirror Sci-Fi Best Director hist Thanksgiving zombie Sony Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt cats Hallmark Christmas movies young adult revenge zombies sag awards transformers razzies harry potter Elton John joker name the review cults Neflix trailers black comedy Cartoon Network posters Disney Apple TV+ crossover remakes festivals See It Skip It Box Office Western comic book movies 99% CBS All Access First Look art house Sundance TV japan Rocky 72 Emmy Awards spanish language festival IFC Films venice HBO parents Comic-Con@Home 2021 Comedy Central MCU Pacific Islander BET scene in color series cops scene in color police drama Mary poppins french