Long Range Tracking: ‘Mary Poppins Returns,’ ‘Aquaman,’ & ‘Bumblebee’
This week’s report takes a look at three key holiday releases slated for the penultimate weekend of 2018, less than one week before Christmas Day.
Note: due to the sometimes abnormal holding patterns of films around this time of year, tracking ranges and long-term forecasts are more volatile than with typical releases and could shift significantly in the weeks ahead.
Mary Poppins Returns
Opening 3-Day Weekend Range: $30 – 50 million
All signs point to another major holiday success from Disney with this long-awaited sequel’s appeal to multiple generations of fans. Star Emily Blunt (Into the Woods, A Quiet Place) has won early praise for her faithful take on the iconic Julie Andrews character, while co-star Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton) provides another marquee name for a film that is bound to capitalize on the wave of successful musicals at the box office.
Trailer reactions are enthusiastic, and early social media trends are very encouraging. Industry buzz is additionally notable after the film won over a group of exhibitors recently, with rumors bubbling that the studio could make a push for top line categories like Best Picture in the nearing Oscar race. The main question remaining at this point is if younger audiences will gravitate toward the nostalgia-driven film, or if competing films in the market will divide that key demographic.
Either way, we currently expect big results with staying power that should extend well out from the film’s Wednesday, December 19 opening.
Opening Weekend Range: $40 – 60 million
The DC cinematic brand will be tested again with the universe’s first chapter since last year’s Justice League under-performed. A strong contingent of fans are excited for this character’s first big-screen solo adventure, while Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, and the ensemble cast should help translate to fair appeal among both men and women.
Social buzz thus far is comparable to Ant-Man and the Wasp, although a less front-loaded run is likely given the time of year. Reviews and word of mouth, as always, will be key for the comic book adaptation, but Aquaman is effectively looking to serve as the top option for moviegoers interested in an action-driven spectacle around the holiday break.
Opening Weekend Range: $15 – 25 million
Our immediate concern is that the Transformers franchise has lost a significant amount of goodwill among general audiences after the last two films displayed sharp declines at the domestic box office. That will be the initial disadvantage for this 1980s-set prequel (along with the opening weekend competition), but early trailers have started to win over fans hoping for a freshtake on the brand thanks to a new and accomplished filmmaker (Kubo and the Two Strings‘ Travis Knight) at the helm with a character-driven tone advertised thus far.
While Bumblebee is likely to finish third among the December 21 weekend’s new releases, family appeal and word of mouth could go a long way toward giving it healthy legs into early 2019.
|Release Date||Title||3-Day Wide Release Tracking||% Chg from Last Week||Domestic Total Forecast||% Chg from Last Week||Estimated Location Count||Distributor|
|11/2/2018||Tyler Perry’s Nobody’s Fool||$13,500,000||$36,000,000||2,400||Paramount|
|11/2/2018||The Nutcracker and the Four Realms||$20,000,000||-5%||$76,000,000||-5%||3,800||Disney|
|11/2/2018||Suspiria (Wide)||n/a||n/a||n/a||Amazon Studios|
|11/9/2018||The Girl in the Spider’s Web||$13,000,000||-7%||$38,000,000||-5%||2,900||Sony / Columbia|
|11/9/2018||Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch||$69,000,000||-1%||$290,000,000||4,200||Universal|
|11/16/2018||Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald||$75,000,000||$222,000,000||Warner Bros.|
|11/21/2018||The Front Runner (Wide Expansion)||n/a||n/a||Sony|
|11/21/2018||Ralph Breaks the Internet||$50,000,000||$200,000,000||Disney|
|11/21/2018||Robin Hood||$9,500,000||$26,000,000||Lionsgate / Summit|
|11/30/2018||The Possession of Hannah Grace||n/a||n/a||Sony / Columbia|
|12/7/2018||The Silence||n/a||n/a||Global Road|
|12/14/2018||The Mule||$14,000,000||$80,000,000||Warner Bros.|
|12/14/2018||Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse||$22,000,000||$90,000,000||Sony / Columbia|
|12/19/2018||Mary Poppins Returns||$40,000,000||NEW||$350,000,000||NEW||Disney|
|12/21/2018||Untitled Deadpool Movie||n/a||n/a||Fox|
|12/21/2018||Welcome to Marwen||n/a||n/a||Universal|
Contact us for information about subscribing to Boxoffice.com’s suite of forecasting and data services.
Alex Edghill contributed to research for this report