The Summer Box Office Challenge Week 5: A Wicked Witch and a Funny Cowboy Take Aim on the X-Men


Welcome to week five of our 2014 Summer Box-Office Challenge!

Think of it as a summer-long contest for movie-lovers — you’ll make predictions and guesses as to which summer movies will rule the box-office each week, we award points and at the end of the contest the three top point-earners will each win a Blu-ray/DVD prize pack! First place will win ten (10) Blu-ray/DVD titles released throughout the coming summer, second place wins five (5) and third place wins two (2). We’ll have bonus questions each week as well to help bolster your point totals and keep you in the running.

The box office estimates from this past weekend are a bit too close to call just yet — the rankings below will be updated this afternoon once the actuals come in — but the top two films won’t surprise anyone. Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Days of Future Past took first place with just over $90 million while Godzilla fell to second meaning everyone who played last week earns two points for the bonus question. Our player top five has finally gotten a bit of a shake-up too. Here are the current standings for our contest (with the understanding that they may chance once actuals come in later today). [UPDATE: The actuals show X-Men earning $90.8 million so these results are unchanged.]

  1. Chris B – 14 points
  2. Husain – 13 pts
  3. AKFilmfan – 11 pts
  4. Starkweather – 11 pts
  5. Spencer Connell – 8 pts

And now it’s on to week five! Check out the challenge questions below and play along in the comments section.

X-Men: Days of Future Past seemed guaranteed to take #1, but the question was where would it land in the franchise. The series has been on a bit of a slide in recent years, but strong trailers and even stronger word of mouth resulted in the second highest opening weekend of the seven films. That’s not adjusted for inflation, but it’s still a solidly respectable number. As I said above, everyone who played last week had Godzilla pegged for # 2, and that attitude towards Adam Sandler’s Blended carried over to the general populace too as his latest only managed to take in a measly $14 million.

The weekend coming up promises to be considerably less predictable with two new wide releases adding to the mix. Walt Disney’s Maleficent with Angelina Jolie in the title role is hoping to recapture some of that live-action Alice in Wonderland and Oz the Great and Powerful box office gold. It’s no coincidence that both of those films were also Disney titles as they’re nothing if not masters of formula. A bit less tested is Seth MacFarlane and his A Million Ways to Die in the West. His directorial debut Ted was a monster hit, but he only provided a voice there opposite a bankable star in Mark Wahlberg. Not only is he front and center in his latest, but it’s also a comedy western… not exactly a genre known for box office stability. Plus, you know, it looks pretty terrible.

To enter, leave a comment below with your answers to these questions by 11:59 pm Central time Wednesday:

  1. Predict the #1 film at the box office for May 30 – June 1 and how much it will earn:  The closest correct answer earns 5 points, the 2nd closest earns 3 points and a correct guess within one million dollars earns an additional 2 points. (Example: “Filth, $1m”)
  2. Bonus Question: Will Maleficent‘s opening weekend be closer to Alice in Wonderland‘s ($116.1m) or Oz the Great and Powerful‘s ($79.1m)? A correct answer earns two points.

Here are the incredibly simple rules:

  • The cutoff for predictions is 11:59 pm Central time each Wednesday, and there will be no exceptions.
  • Predictions are for Friday to Sunday domestic box office as reported by Box Office Mojo.
  • The contest runs through the weekend of July 25-27 (that will be the final round).
  • Be sure your Disqus info is accurate and consistent as that’s how we’ll be tracking your guesses week to week and contacting our three winners.
  • Comment edits made AFTER the cutoff time constitute cheating and will result in player forfeit.

We’ll return next Monday for week 6 and our updated leader-board. Thanks for playing and good luck!

Rob is the Chief Film Critic of Film School Rejects. He doesn't eat cheese on weekdays.

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