Box Office Forecast: 300: Rise of an Empire and Mr. Peabody and Sherman face off on first weekend of March

Summer is finally closing in fast as we will finally get a taste of what seems like a month which is looking more and more like summer every year, as we arrive in the month of March. This weekend, we will see two very different movies, 300: Rise of an Empire and Mr. Peabody and Sherman, as they face off.

300 rise of an empire
FACEBOOK: 11,385,720 likes (combined with first film)
ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE: 58% from 36 reviews

300: Rise of an Empire comes around 7 years after the first film, which is really a very long time, which usually means a lot of buzz and a similar opening, but I am predicting that this film goes much lower than the $70 million opening the first film managed. Why, you might ask, and that is due to the very fact that the cast and crew has mostly been switched out, with new faces being switched in. Director Zack Snyder had left directing duties for this film to Noam Murro, which really isn’t even a name the mainstream audience has heard of. This shouldn’t be such a big problem, though, as the marketing has instead wisely put only Zack Snyder’s name (he serves as producer for this film). Meanwhile, for the cast who will appear on screen, we have Lena Headey and Rodrigo Santoro returning, though Gerard Butler is definitely not returning due to obvious reasons (he died in the previous film). Instead we have new faces, like Eva Green and Sullivan Stapleton. The trailers have shown that the director has successfully implemented the visual style the first film took, and reviews have also proven that Eva Green’s performance isn’t bad, which will definitely attract the first film’s fans to come for another outing. Reviews overall fall in the same range early on, with the current rotten tomatoes score seating at 58% (the first film was at 60%). However, one thing must be taken note of- the visual style isn’t original anymore, with several films already adopting the approach. Therefore, moviegoers might not treat this as an event film, unlike the first film. To add on to all those, the genre has been taking quite a dip lately, with Legend of Hercules and Pompeii flopping lately (I, Frankenstein either). However, the brand should instantly attract viewers into theaters, and advantage it has over the former three. 3D should also help to bring in slightly bigger numbers.
It is definitely not possible for this film to hit the opening weekend gross the first film managed, but you should also not underestimate the film’s potential. I am currently expecting $39 million for this film, though don’t be surprised if the film ends up in the low $30 million range.

mr peabody and sherman
FACEBOOK: 1,065,145 likes
ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE: 76% from 33 reviews

Mr Peabody and Sherman is Dreamwork’s first film of the year, right after Turbo failed to impress last summer. Dreamwork’s is having a bit of a fall lately, with both Rise of the Guardians and Turbo not managing to hit expectations, and potentially hitting new lows for the studio in quite some time. However, Mr. Peabody and Sherman isn’t expected to be that bad, at least. Firstly, it has a source material to depend on. Older moviegoers might have caught the film’s characters on “The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show” in the 1960s, and might have some nostalgia and come back to check out this film. Also, Dreamwork’s seems to be following a new trend where they release a film annually in March, so as to try to replicate the success of The Croods last year. I can’t deny that the trailers have indeed been appealing, or rather interesting, and might be a real hit, but the market for animated films has been rather competitive lately. Firstly, Frozen and The Lego Movie are still going strong, with Frozen winning an Oscar less than a week ago, and The Lego Movie still hovering in the top 5. The Muppets: Most Wanted will also be arriving in the scene within 2 weeks, which make this film stuck in between. Turbo was also stuck in this messy problem and ended up not benefiting from it. Parents might decide to skip this film and bring their kids straight to The Lego Movie or simply wait for the Muppets sequel, as both films have a stronger history, and much better word of mouth. Mr. Peabody and Sherman has been receiving rather decent reviews as of now, with a 76% rating from 33 reviews.

With all that, I am currently expecting an opening at around $31 million.

This weekend last year, Oz: The Great and Powerful opened to $79.1 million, leading the top 10 chart, while the other films did not bring in more than $10 million each. The top 10 brought in $124.7 million. This weekend might have a bit of difficulty topping that, but we will see..

And finally, to end off this post, here are my current top 10 estimates for the weekend:
1)300: Rise of an Empire- $39 million
2)Mr Peabody and Sherman- $31 million

3)Non-Stop- $15.1 million
4)The Lego Movie- $12.9 million
5)Son of God- $12.1 million
6)The Monuments Men- $3.3 million
7)Frozen- $2.7 million
8)3 Days to Kill- $2.5 million
9)Robocop- $2.1 million
10)Pompeii- $2.0 million
Top 10 combined: $122.7 million
Last Year Top 10 Combined: $124.7 million

That’s all for now! Check back soon for more posts! Meanwhile, the Oscars has recently came and gone in a blink, and we have the winners here. Meanwhile, here’s the March Box Office Preview, and here’s the 2014 Box Office Estimates, which have my early estimates all the way till the last weekend of the year.

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