Long Range Tracking: ‘Bad Times at the El Royale,’ ‘First Man,’ & ‘Goosebumps: Haunted Halloween’

This week’s report continues our look into October’s very promising release slate with three more wide releases scheduled for Friday the 12th.

Bad Times at the El Royale
Opening Weekend Range: $11 – 17 million

There’s a lot to be encouraged about considering the strong ensemble cast led by Chris Hemsworth, Jon Hamm, Dakota Johnson, and Jeff Bridges, plus a screenplay from director Drew Goddard (The Cabin in the Woods helmer, The Martian writer). In the vein of his own new classic Cabin and last year’s Murder on the Orient Express, this could prove to be a leggy, adult-aimed thriller with room to play into November if reception is strong. Our somewhat conservative projections at this time are driven by modest social media growth, although that could pick up once marketing hits full throttle.

First Man
Opening Weekend Range: $15 – 25 million

Ryan Gosling and Claire Foy headline this biopic about Neil Armstrong from acclaimed filmmaker Damien Chazelle (La La LandWhiplash), providing a lot of rising star power in front of and behind the camera to draw early award season speculation. As one of the greatest accomplishments in human history, the true story of Armstrong’s life leading up to the first moon-landing could prove to be universally appealing in a number of ways.

Strong trailers and a planned run in IMAX and PLF theaters add a bit of a boost to current box office prospects, with early comps including the likes of MoneyballArgoCaptain Phillips, and Sully. If early screening reactions exceed expectations, look for forecasts to increase as release approaches.

Goosebumps: Haunted Halloween
Opening Weekend Range: $12 – 17 million

Although the first film was a solid $80 million domestic hit three autumns ago, the absence of star Jack Black could have some noticeable impact on the sequel’s returns in comparison. Still, this is a kid-friendly, holiday-timed option that may find success in the long run with what should be a more modest budget and only the third weekend of Smallfoot providing direct competition until early November.

8-Week Tracking

Release Date Title 3-Day Wide Opening % Chg from Last Week Domestic Total % Chg from Last Week Estimated Location Count Distributor
8/24/2018 A.X.L. $1,750,000 $4,400,000 n/a Global Road
8/24/2018 The Happytime Murders $14,000,000 -10% $36,600,000 -10% 3,000 STX
8/29/2018 Operation Finale $6,000,000 $19,000,000 2,300 MGM
8/31/2018 Kin $5,000,000 -9% $12,600,000 -9% 1,500 Lionsgate / Summit
8/31/2018 Searching n/a n/a n/a Sony / Screen Gems
8/31/2018 Ya Veremos n/a n/a 350 Pantelion
9/7/2018 God Bless the Broken Road $1,500,000 NEW $3,750,000 NEW Freestyle Releasing
9/7/2018 The Nun $39,000,000 -3% $93,000,000 -3% Warner Bros. / New Line
9/7/2018 Peppermint $12,000,000 $33,500,000 STX Entertainment
9/14/2018 The Predator (2018) $28,000,000 $65,000,000 Fox
9/14/2018 A Simple Favor $14,000,000 $40,000,000 Lionsgate
9/14/2018 Unbroken: Path to Redemption $2,000,000 $4,900,000 Pure Flix
9/14/2018 White Boy Rick $7,500,000 $24,000,000 Sony / Studio 8
9/21/2018 Fahrenheit 11/9 n/a n/a Briarcliff
9/21/2018 The House with a Clock In Its Walls $24,000,000 $79,000,000 Universal
9/21/2018 Life Itself n/a n/a Amazon Studios
9/28/2018 Hell Fest $9,500,000 $22,000,000 Lionsgate / CBS Films
9/28/2018 Little Women (2018) n/a n/a Pure Flix
9/28/2018 Night School (2018) $17,500,000 $55,000,000 Universal
9/28/2018 Smallfoot $23,000,000 $80,000,000 Warner Bros.
10/5/2018 A Star Is Born $30,000,000 $140,000,000 20% Warner Bros.
10/5/2018 Venom (2018) $65,000,000 63% $135,000,000 59% Sony / Columbia
10/12/2018 Bad Times at the El Royale $13,000,000 NEW $40,000,000 NEW Fox
10/12/2018 First Man $20,000,000 NEW $90,000,000 NEW Universal
10/12/2018 Goosebumps: Haunted Halloween $14,000,000 NEW $45,000,000 NEW Sony / Columbia


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Shawn Robbins


  1. Avatar
    John August 17, 2018

    A little low on First Man both in opening and final gross but as you said if its an Oscar contender, it should increase forecasts. Personally I believe it will do $25-30 million OW then leg it out to $100 million and beyond. Yeah A Star Is Born may provide some competition but both can thrive if critically acclaimed.

  2. Avatar
    Ben August 17, 2018

    I think venom OW is about right (I predict a bit higher) and I expect it to get terrible reception so maybe not let’s that bad but probably a total around 150 to 175. Star is Born seems about right although I can see that plummet if it gets bad reception. First Man I think will be a bit higher (again based on reception) and I think BTATER could be a sleeper hit

  3. Avatar
    Matt D August 17, 2018

    I think the The Nun is a little low for me. I would say $40 M OW and finish around $105-120 M. Venom is 50/50. If the move is good that prediction is right if it sucks then we have a bomb on our hands with my prediction at $35 M OW and finish around $75-80 M. I think BTATER should be lower since I have seen no trailer for this movie in a while (which to me is bad since the movie comes out in less than two months) and the trailer on YouTube still hasn’t even hit over 1M views yet. I think a $3-5 M OW and finish around $10 M. Thats just my opinion but I think it will be very well received but with the competition such as A Star Is Born, First Man and Halloween the week after I can just see this film flopping. The First Man is also low too. I am predicting a $30 M OW and finish around $110-130 M.

    • Avatar
      Kissan August 20, 2018

      Yeah I see The Nun opening at around $40M OW and around 100M-110M as well.

  4. Avatar
    Ticiano August 17, 2018

    where is Halloween?

    • Avatar
      Kissan August 20, 2018

      Halloween forecast is on Oct 19th, but yeah can’t wait for that forecast!


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