Weekend Box Office Predictions 5/7

Posted May 7th, 2010 at 12:36 pm

Expected to be the biggest movie of the summer Iron Man 2 rolls into theaters today. Not surprisingly no other studio wanted to take on Tony Stark, and the only other release is the documentary Babies. The big question is can Iron Man 2 break the opening record currently held by The Dark Knight?

There is an unprecedented level of anticipation for Iron Man 2, and it really is one of the few movies that appeals to all demographics. Other than Will Smith there is no bigger draw these days than Robert Downey Jr. and he has established Tony Stark as almost an extension of himself. Of course with how well the first was received the expectations are much higher for the sequel. That means the possibility for disappointment is higher and word of mouth may not be as strong as the original. Check out my review for thoughts on whether it lived up to the hype.

Industry expectations are in the $140-$160 million range, giving it a chance to beat TDK‘s $158 million but with most thinking it won’t quite get there.  IM2 has the benefit of being the widest release in history, edging out the number of screens held by TDK.  Reviews have generally trended positive, maybe not enthusiastically so, but the 71% on Rotten Tomatoes is good enough. Look for Iron Man 2 to bring in about $142 million this weekend. I don’t think it has the strength to trend above TDK but it’ll be interesting to monitor.

A documentary following the first 15 months of the lives of four children in different areas of the world, Babies, arrives in limited release. 529 screens is actually a rather high number for the opening of a documentary. It has gotten good buzz but for it is a very rare thing for people to go out to see documentaries. It could pick up on word of mouth over the coming weeks, but a solid opening of about $3 million should be expected.

Opening Predictions
Iron Man 2: $142 Million
Babies: $3 Million