JoBlo.com's Box-Office Predictions! (January 6-8)
It's always fascinating to observe the box office competition, the bloody Hollywood gladiatorial clash. To cheer for champions and underdogs, to speculate on tactics, or to hail the demise of the dreadful. And, of course, to witness the weekly reminders that success (or failure) isn't always an indicator of quality.
All through the week, JoBlo.com delivers news, reviews, rumors and opinions on everything about the movies. But when the weekend arrives, eyeballs tend to fall on the business side of show business to see how those all-important numbers tally.
Does even Satan himself have the power to boot Tom Cruise off the top of the box office? We'll find out this weekend when THE DEVIL INSIDE opens. Paramount's exorcism cheapie (released under the studio's Insurge label) is the only new release, going up against MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - GHOST PROTOCOL and all the big movies that have been battling since before Christmas.
The low-budget "found footage" flick's opening will probably fall somewhere between the last couple of demonic possession movies' first weekends -- THE RITE opened last January to $14.7M, and THE LAST EXORCISM scared up $20.3M the August before that.
The first January weekend is also not a particularly busy box office time -- last year the only new opening was the Nic Cage medieval supernatural movie SEASON OF THE WITCH, placing third with just $10M behind holiday holdovers TRUE GRIT and LITTLE FOCKERS. But it has also turned into a traditional time to release horror flicks, with varying results -- over the past few years, the first weekend after New Year's has seen fright flicks like DAYBREAKERS, THE UNBORN, HOSTEL, WHITE NOISE and ONE MISSED CALL open with anywhere from $12M to $24M.
Still, I wouldn't be surprised if Lucifer just can't kick Tom from his tower, and MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL will continue its number 1 reign with a probable $16M. However, THE DEVIL INSIDE should be chomping at Ethan Hunt's heels with perhaps $15M, which would still be a strong performance considering the customarily slow time of year and the relatively miniscule budget for the spooker. Either way, Paramount wins -- they're both from that studio, which is basically competing with itself for the top slot.
The rest of the list should look reasonably similar to last weekend, only... less. The only other potentially noteworthy change in the top 10 could be TINKER, TAILOR, SOLDIER, SPY, which expands onto 800+ screens and may benefit from its word of mouth and awards buzz.
My stab at the Top 5:
1. MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - GHOST PROTOCOL - $16M
2. THE DEVIL INSIDE - $15M
3. SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS - $10.5M
4. WAR HORSE - $9M
5. ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS: CHIPWRECKED - $8.5M
POST YOUR PREDICTIONS BELOW...!!!