With Indiana Jones under-performing last week, this weekend sees three new titles vying to make their mark.
In the wake of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny severely underperforming last week, it would seem this weekend is up for the taking. A lot of films seemed to get out of the way of the final installment of the iconic franchise, choosing only to release titles aimed at specific audiences in a hope to garner some counter programming dollars. One such title, the Jim Caviezel starring Sound of Freedom, which features a faith based angle in its story about human trafficking, has already been released and proved its formidability as it actually beat Indiana Jones at the box office on Tuesday, July 4, when it pulled in a massive $14.2 million against Indy’s $11.6. I don’t think anyone saw Indiana Jones being beaten at the box office just five days after its release, especially on a national holiday. Of course, as we pointed out, a lot of that box office for Sound of Freedom comes from a “pay it forward” campaign which saw customers purchase tickets for other audience members to be redeemed at a later date.
So, the question here is: can Sound of Freedom maintain this momentum into the weekend and pull off a massive upset with a number one finish? The short answer: no! The film will have legs due to its solid reviews (currently at an 88% on Rotten Tomatoes) and great word of mouth (currently at a 100% Audience Score.) Faith based movies have proven their worth in the market place over the past few years with films such as Jesus Revolution pulling in over $52 million when it was released earlier this year. With a budget of just $14.2 million, Sound of Freedom is already a massive success. I would expect this one to finish in the number three spot this weekend with somewhere between $10-$15 million.
The real fight will come down to Indy vs A Demon as the hit horror franchise Insidious comes to an end with Insidious: The Red Door with franchise star Patrick Wilson making his directorial debut. The series, which saw its first two installments directed by horror icon James Wan while his partner in crime Leigh Whannell penned the first four films and conceived of the story for this latest installment, has been a continuous money maker at the box office with the first film opening with $13.2 million before netting $54 million ($100.1 million worldwide) while Insidious: Chapter 2 saw an opening of $40.2 million before finishing with $83.5 million ($161.9 worldwide), Insidious: Chapter 3 would open with $22.6 million before finishing with $52.2 million ($112.9 million worldwide) while Insidious: The Last Key would open with $29.5 million before finishing at $67.7 million ($167.8 worldwide) and all of that money (over half a billion dollars worldwide) is with just a cumulative $26.5 million budget for the four films. The Blumhouse model works! Perhaps spending $300 million on one movie and expecting it to make over a billion isn’t the best business plan (*cough* Indiana Jones, The Flash, Fast X *cough*).
The big question is what type of drop will Indy take in its second weekend? With word of mouth as it is, I think this one will dip around 60% which puts it around $24 million, which is about where I predict Insidious will come in at. Horror films tend to be front loaded, so Insidious will definitely take Friday night, but I will be keeping an eye on those audience scores to see if that one will have the juice to beat Indy in his second weekend. It wouldn’t be the first time an Indiana Jones Movie slipped to second in its second week: Kingdom of the Crystal Skull dipped 55.3% in its second weekend and finished behind the Sex and the City movie, of course that one opened over $100 million!
Not to be counted out is the R rated comedy Joy Ride co-written by Cherry Chevapravatdumrong, who has been a writer and executive producer on TV’s Family Guy for several years. The film has already received some solid reviews. (Currently at a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes) and has the potential to be a breakout hit. The R rated comedy genre saw a bit of a boost recently with the Jennifer Lawrence fronted No Hard Feelings and if this raunchy road trip comedy can hit, we may soon see a full blown revitalization of the R rated comedy genre, which I am all for! With all of that said, I do think this one will open a bit soft, $9 million, but may prove to have solid legs if audiences agree with the critics.
The remainder of this weekend’s box office will be your holdovers with both Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse continuing its dominating run while Elemental proves that sometimes a weak opening weekend isn’t the death knell for a movie.
Do you have plans to hit the theaters this weekend? If so, let us know what you plan on seeing in the comments and don’t forget to check back on Saturday when we have a brief update on where the numbers are heading.
TOP FIVE PREDICTIONS