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Reject Report: This Weekend’s Box Office is Looking Up

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Welcome to another Reject Report, and if I seem less enthusiastic than usual with my column this week it’s because we all know Up is going to win, and it really does get boring sometimes making predictions when you know for sure your prediction is going to come true. At least as far as who finishes first is concerned, anyway. How much loot it will take in this weekend is still anyone’s guess.

In other news, we have another horror movie rolling out in theaters: Drag Me to Hell. The obvious question this weekend is: will the box office go to hell, or will it go Up?

I will start off with a prediction about Drag Me to Hell. First of all let me begin by asking the dreaded question: aren’t you fed up with horror movies yet? It sure seems like we have seen a lot of them so far this year, but what is unusual is that a lot of them have made a lot of money. Drag Me to Hell is unusual in another respect — it’s not a sequel, although it is a return to Raimi’s horror flick roots. This one is directed by Sam Raimi and stars Alison Lohman, Justin Long and David Paymer. It’s about a loan officer that falls victim to a supernatural curse that makes her life a lining hell. According to the movie’s tagline: “Christine Brown has a good job, a great boyfriend, and a bright future. But in three days, she’s going to hell.”

I guess the big question is whether Universal Studios is going to box office hell for releasing this movie. Well, this is in 2,500 theaters and the only other new wide release is a flick aimed at kids. I think this one will find an audience, and since it seems like most horror flicks this year has opened to $20 million, I will go out on a limb and predict $20 million for Drag Me to Hell.

Next is Up, which should ascend to box office heaven simply because it’s Pixar again, back for more cash. This flick made its way to the Cannes Film Festival and made quite a splash. But then, what Pixar flick hasn’t, lately? You have to admit, these folks haven’t laid an egg yet. This one is about 78-year-old balloon salesman Carl Fredricksen who ties a bunch of balloons to his house in a quest to see South America, only it turns out he has company on his trip in an 8-year-old kid. Ed Asner, Jordan Nagai and Christopher Plummer provide some of the voices.

Right now the online sales for Up are running ahead of what Monsters vs. Aliens was doing for business. I mention Monsters vs. Aliens for a reason. That was another movie that was in 3-D and got a big 3-D push, so I am expecting a similar sort of reaction to Up. I am predicting $66 million for Up.

I mean, heck, it’s Pixar. They always do this sort of business.

So here is my rundown of what I expect to happen this weekend:

  1. Up – $66 million
  2. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian – $30 million
  3. Terminator Salvation – $24 million
  4. Drag Me to Hell – $20 million
  5. Star Trek – $16 million
  6. Angels and Demons – $13.5 million
  7. Dance Flick – $5.5 million
  8. X-Men Origins: Wolverine – $5 million
  9. Ghosts of Girlfriends Past – $2.2 million
  10. Obsessed – $1.4 million

And that’s it.

In other news from the week, I noticed that Star Trek has just passed Monsters vs. Aliens to be the Number One movie at the domestic box office. Number One. At $194 million. Holy coyote, that’s pretty good. It looks like Star Trek will be the first movie this year to hit $200 million.

Meet me right here again at the Reject Report at the end of the weekend when we’ll see if the box office goes to Hell — or goes Up.

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