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The Reject Report 18: One Small Step for Box Office Predictions

The Reject ReportThe 17 before it came, touched down, collected some sweet rocks, looked at some Transformers, and went home. But this 18th Reject Report, it’ll show you things you never even dreamed could be in existence. Like a 3-D movie about partying teens who get taken out by a pack of fresh-water sharks…and IT’S PG-13! Or how about a found footage thriller about a Moon landing that goes horribly awry? Or how about a film starring Helen Mirren? Actually that last one we could dream of. In fact, we do often. She kicks some ass in this movie, right? Sweet! All that and more can be found in this 18th Reject Report – actually it’s more like the 112th, 113th. I don’t know. I didn’t actually go back and count them – so strap in, throw on your 3-D glasses – or don’t. We don’t care either way – and try not to think of Helen Mirren. I know. It’s difficult.

BIG HITTERS

Apollo 18 is NOT the long-awaited sequel to Apollo 13 where Gary Sinise finally gets his shot at space-travel redemption. Man, that guy can’t let it go. No, this found footage thriller is about an 18th mission to the Moon that was stricken from the history books. Why? Who knows? But the Weinsteins have uncovered the footage, pieced it together in a 90-minute thriller, and are releasing it for your viewing terrors. Oh, I just found out this movie isn’t real. Well, then, it’ll be in line with such successful films as The Blair Witch Project ($29.2m first wide weekend), Paranormal Activity ($21.1m first wide weekend), and The Last Exorcism ($20.3m opening weekend). However, sci-fi being more divisive than say ghosts, demons, and that creepy dude standing in the corner will cause Apollo 18 to not open as strongly as any of those previous films. Expect Apollo 18 to debut somewhere in the high teens. Its chances of breaking past $20m are about as good as Sinise getting his shot at the moon. Sorry, Lt. Dan.

And just to get you in an old timey, found footage, lunar kind of mood, here’s footage of Neil Armstrong becoming the first man to step foot on the Moon.

Who has two thumbs, has the ability to point, and absolutely, without question Hates sharks? Hate. With a capital H. This land-lover right here. But what do I hate more than sharks? PG-13 horror movies that should really be R. Let’s not kid ourselves. Shark Night 3-D – I’m also not too fond of that gimmick, so you know I’ll be first in line for this gem – got whittled down to a PG-13 rating for whatever extra cash it could make. Here’s an idea, Relativity. How about you don’t open it against another horror movie, one that will clearly beat you to the #1 spot? While Shark Night 3-D won’t match the $21.2m opening My Bloody Valentine 3-D had, it’ll likely bring in more than the $5.1m Drive Angry debuted with earlier this year. Expect a #2 showing around the $13m mark. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going back to hating sharks, 3-D, and the unwarranted PG-13 rating.

Someone explain to me the hotness that surrounds Helen Mirren. I’m fully aware it exists. I’m in no way questioning it. I just wonder where it comes from. Oh, yeah, she’s in a movie this weekend. The Debt opened Wednesday on around 1800 screens. That’s after being pushed back and pushed back for months so Miramax could figure out some legal issues. Doesn’t really matter. It’s not the type of movie that will ride the hype train to more than double digits. You can anticipate it to come in around $6-7m, adding a couple hundred thousand for the Helen Mirren fan club attendees. You think I’m kidding? I’m not kidding.

FAMILIARITIES

The Help has officially broken in the $100m club. It took them long enough. Sheesh. What a bomb that movie is. We kid though, for sure. The movie is already a hit, and it’ll only keep raking in the very deserved dollars as Disney revs it up for a potential Oscar run.

Aside from that, there isn’t much to spill on the familiarity side of things. Unless you count Cars 2 expanding back into more than 2000 screens this weekend newsworthy. You don’t either? Okay. Moving on.

LITTLE OPENERS

When former David Letterman writers Alex Gregory and Peter Huyck join forces, there’s only one phrase that can hold in all the awesome that goes with that. A Good Old Fashioned Orgy. That’s right. That’s the name of their latest comedy starring Jason Sudeikis, Leslie Bibb, Nick Kroll, Lake Bell, Will Forte, and a whole slew of comedic actors. Something tells me with a title like that, this is another in a long line of R-rated comedies hitting this year. Let me check. Yep. Rated R. Graphic nudity? You bet. So if that floats your boat – personally, polyester resin floats mine, but this amount of forced logic is probably why I’ve never been to an orgy – check this comedy out. A Good Old Fashioned Orgy opens in select cities around the country.

Also opening in limited release are Bodyguard opening in select cities, Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life opening in New York and L.A., Love Crime opening in select cities, Love Exposure opening in New York City, Saving Private Perez opening in select cities, Bol opening in select cities, and Seven Days in Utopia opening in select cities.

Here’s how the 3-day weekend is shaping up:

  1. Apollo 18 – $16.1m NEW
  2. Shark Night 3D – $12.9m NEW
  3. The Help – $10.9m (-24.4%)
  4. The Debt – $6.6m NEW Opened Wednesday
  5. Colombiana – $5.2m (-49.9%)
  6. Rise of the Planet of the Apes –  $4.8m (-44.8%)
  7. Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark – $4.1m (-51.5%)
  8. Our Idiot Brother – $3.8m (-44.4%)
  9. Spy Kids: All the Time in the World – $3.2m (-46%)
  10. The Smurfs – $2.8m (-40.3%)

And there we have $70.4m, an actual upswing from last weekend’s tie for the year’s lowest. Let’s not break out the We Are the Champions and pour Gatorade on ourselves just yet. This is still a lower than average for the Labor Day weekend haul. The American topped the same weekend last year, and that was mostly due to people falling asleep in the theater who couldn’t ask for their money back. We kid, Clooney. Love that movZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

We’ll be awake and back on Sunday to go over the weekend numbers.

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Jeremy's been writing about movies for a good, 15 years, starting with the film review column of his high school newspaper. He stands proud as the first person in his high school to have seen (and recommend) Pulp Fiction. Jeremy went on to get a B.A. in Cinema and Photography with a minor in journalism. His experience and knowledge of film is aided by the list of 6600 films he has seen in his life (so far). Jeremy's belief is that there are no bad films, just unrealized possibilities. Except Batman and Robin. That shit was awful.

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