Reject Report: Who Will Find Box Office ‘Gold’ This weekend?

Welcome to another super edition of the Reject Report! All I will say is I no longer feel so bad about my own prognostication abilities after last weekend. I say that because — as you know — so many people parted with their cash when the New York Giants shocked the world and upset the undefeated New England Patriots in the Super Bowl. I guess the question now is whether people plan to lose even more money at the movies this weekend, because some of these flicks look like GARBAGE. The month of May can’t come fast enough for me, folks.

You have to be a fool to make predictions on what will happen this weekend at the box office. Two new movies Fool’s Gold and Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins are going to be duking it out for first place against the extended run of Hannah Montana. Plus, Vince Vaughn makes an appearance with a new movie. All that and more on this week’s Reject Report.

Before I get into the new releases I might as well talk about Disney’s decision earlier this week to extend the run of Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour, apparently for as long as these theaters want to show it. People in the media are calling Disney for BS, saying that it’s kind of dishonest to go out and make a big deal about how this Hannah Montana digital 3-D experience would be a one-week-only engagement. People are accusing Disney of taking advantage of people with this strategy. Well, I think all these kids and soccer moms out there would have rushed to see Hannah Montana anyway, whether it was a one-week engagement or not. Still, it was brilliant marketing by Disney. This helped that flick become the number one movie in the United States in only 683 theaters. Disney got a ton of free publicity because all the newscasts were reporting that Hannah Montana was the box office champ last weekend. Plus, I’m sure there are a lot of people who didn’t get to see this flick because it was sold right out. So the powers that be figured they might as well extend it.

As of February 5, Hannah Montana has made $37,260,710 and set all kinds of records. I think there will be a dropoff from week one to week two, but still, I think $18 million is achievable for Hannah Montana. The question I have is: are the admission prices going to stay the same, or are they going to drop?! Some of these 3-D theaters were charging a fortune for Hannah Montana — upwards of twenty dollars! I can rant and rave for hours about the cost of going to the cinemas these days, but twenty dollars for a movie, any movie, is downright freaking ridiculous. I think the prices are going to have to come down at some of these places. We’ll see.

Now on to the new movies this weekend.

foolsgold01.jpgFool’s Gold is opening in a ton of theaters this weekend ( over 2700 ), and stars Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson in a re-teaming of these two love birds from their movie How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. (That movie, by the way, made a ridiculous amount of money when it came out in 2003; something like $105 million.) Here, these two play a couple whose marriage is on the rocks, but a new clue puts these two in search of treasure on the Caribbean Sea. But there are other people who want to beat them to the treasure. (Sound familiar?) Donald Sutherland is also in the cast. Andy Tennant directs; he also directed the Will Smith vehicle Hitch.

Now, the one and only reason I am interested in this movie is because of the movie poster, which shows gorgeous Kate Hudson wearing a hot bikini. I’m sure many guys will probably want to see more Kate-in-a-bikini action. As an aside, I have a huge crush on Kate Hudson and think she’s one of the sexiest actresses in Hollywood, and just about had a seizure when I saw her movie poster. I want to see Kate Hudson in a bikini!!

On the other hand, NOBODY wanted to see Kate in a bikini when she was in that piece of junk You, Me and Dupree — not even me. And this sort of looks like more of a chick flick anyway, so what’s the point? Girls want to see Matthew McConaughey shirtless.

Also, the critics have already savaged this movie. I was reading Rotten Tomatoes and 91 per cent of the critics over there were saying this movie is rotten. So a movie that ought to do $23 or $24 million based on the marquee value of McConaughey and Hudson is probably going to get only about $20 million. I know a lot of prognosticators think it will do better but I have a feeling this might be a little closer to Heartbreak Kid or Good Luck Chuck territory as far as the gross is concerned, especially given the terrible reviews. But keep in mind, those two movies didn’t completely tank at theaters, either. People actually showed up to see that junk! Which is why I think Fool’s Gold will do well in spite of itself.

Next is Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, starring Martin Lawrence.It’s about this LA self-help talk show host, “the male Oprah”, who takes his soon-to-be-wife home with him — to meet his folks. And of course, he’s been gone from this place way too long and can’t relate to his crazy relatives or anything else in his Southern home town. James Earl Jones and Margaret Avery star as the parents and Joy Bryant stars as his fiance. Cedric the Entertainer is also in the cast. It’s written and directed by Malcolm D. Lee.

I think there’s a big potential for an upset this weekend. I know that all the other box office prognosticators keep on underestimating these movies that appeal to African-American audiences. Then the African-Americans would show up at the theaters in droves to give Tyler Perry or somebody else the box-office title for the weekend, and the prognosticators would end up looking pretty stupid. Anyway, I’m going to chicken out yet again and say Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins will lose out to those two fools McConaughey and Hudson, and fall short with a take of $19 million. It opens in about 2300 theaters nationwide.

Finally, we have rolling out this weekend Vince Vaughn’s Wild West Comedy Show: 30 Days and 30 Nights, from Hollywood to the Heartland. And to show you how long this has been in the works, I remember this film was playing at the Toronto International Film Festival — in 2006! This was shot in 2005 and featured Vaughn and a troupe of comedians travelling 6000 miles to perform 30 shows in 30 nights all over the country. Sort of like what they did with these old wild-west shows. I think it will sneak into the Top Ten at $3.5 million. It’s in about 800 theaters.

So, here is what I see playing out at the cinemas this weekend.

Title Predicted Gross
Fool’s Gold $20 million
Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins $19 million
Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: The Best of Both Worlds $18 million
The Eye $7 million
Juno $5.5 million
27 Dresses $5 million
The Bucket List $4.3 million
Rambo $4 million
Meet the Spartans $3.6 million
Vince Vaughn’s Wild West Comedy Show $3.5 million

Well, there you go. To be honest, this week I was really giving serious consideration to handing the box-office title to Martin Lawrence this weekend. But then I would be underestimating Matthew McConaughey’s ability to single-handedly draw women into movie theaters, and overestimating the tastes of American moviegoers. What can I say? Lots of moviegoers in the USA are fools these days.

Back on the weekend with the box office recap.

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