Box office preview: 'Bad Grandpa' ready to take down 'Gravity'

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Image Credit: Sean Cliver

Gravity hasn’t given up the top box office spot since its October 4 debut, but the Sandra Bullock-George Clooney outer space adventure will likely come back down to earth this weekend. And it has nothing to do with the release of Ridley Scott’s The Counselor, another adult-targeted drama. No, the big threat to Gravity is the ultra-cheap comedy Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa, which appears poised to ride its shopping cart all the way into first place.

Here’s how the chart may look this weekend:

1. Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa – $29 million
Paramount’s $15 million Jackass-spinoff, which features Johnny Knoxville in an old man costume (but not the rest of the Jackass crew), has advertised itself as an irreverent, bawdy hidden-camera production — a tactic that has worked very well for previous installments of the Jackass franchise. That series’ last iteration, Jackass 3-D, opened to $50 million in 2010, and while Bad Grandpa won’t reach those heights (especially without the 3-D ticket price boost), according to Fandango it’s selling more tickets ahead of release than We’re the Millers, which opened with over $26 million earlier this year. Bad Grandpa may walk away with about $29 or $30 million this weekend.

2. Gravity – $22 million
After three weekends at number one, Bullock and Clooney will finally drop down to second place. A 30-percent drop would give Gravity another $22 million and send it soaring past the $200 million mark.

3. Captain Phillips – $12 million
Tom Hanks’ drama fell 36 percent last weekend, and another drop in the 33 percent-range would give Captain Phillips a $12 million weekend and just over $70 million total.

4. The Counselor – $11 million
Marketing for Ridley Scott’s drama, which stars Michael Fassbender, Cameron Diaz, and Brad Pitt, has been more than a little bit convoluted. And there’s been minimal publicity from the stars to help make it more clear. The $25 million production seems poised to get lost in the crowded adult drama market, which has seen Gravity, Captain Phillips, and Prisoners thrive recently — while films like Don Jon, Rush, and The Fifth Estate have badly underperformed. Critical reviews are very mixed, and Fassbender, the film’s main lead, is not a proven box office draw. Ridley Scott and the film’s scribe, Cormac McCarthy, may draw a few loyal fans, but The Counselor will likely draw a disappointing $11 million.

5. Carrie – $7.7 million
Horror films typically drop by about 60 percent in their second frame, but Halloween’s pending arrival might boost Carrie‘s prospects a bit. The film may bleed about 55 percent to $7.5 million — enough for a $27 million total.

Check back all weekend to see how new arrivals Bad Grandpa and The Counselor fare.


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