After four weeks of box office domination, the incredible run of Marvel’s Black Panther may finally be coming to an end, with four new movies hitting theaters in wide release this coming weekend. While many thought that A Wrinkle In Time would be the movie to take down Black Panther, that YA adventure drastically underperformed, paving the way for Marvel’s fourth win last weekend with $40.8 million. But with the superhero adventure is now going up against Warner Bros.’ Tomb Raider, 20th Century Fox’s Love, Simon, Roadside Attractions’ I Can Only Imagine and Focus Features’ 7 Days in Entebbe. We’re predicting that T’challa and Company’s hot streak is at its end, with Tomb Raider taking the top spot with an projected $28.3 million.
While we’re expecting Black Panther to drop to second place at this weekend’s Box Office, it will still likely be a close race at the top, since Black Panther‘s decreases from weekend to weekend have actually become even more minimal. The movie dropped a respectable 44.7% from its massive debut in its second weekend, while dropping 40.6% in its third weekend and just 38.4% last weekend. We’re projecting a modest drop of 40%, which would bring its fifth weekend tally to $24.6 million, so if Black Panther overperforms or Tomb Raider underperforms, neither of which would be surprising at this point, it could be Black Panther on top for an amazing fifth weekend in a row.
Of the four new releases this weekend, Tomb Raider has a massive theater count advantage, opening in an estimated 3,600 theaters, while Love, Simon arrives in 2,400 theaters and 7 Days in Entebbe debuts in roughly 800 theaters, although there was no theater estimate posted for I Can Only Imagine. The one advantage Love, Simon does seem to have is with the critics, posting an impressive 88% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, while critics seem mixed on Tomb Raider at the moment with a 50% rating, while 7 Days in Entebbe has a disastrous 17% rating. I Can Only Imagine doesn’t have enough reviews posted at this time to qualify for a TomatoMeter score quite yet.
We’re projecting that the top 5 will be rounded out by Love, Simon in third place with $18.6 million, after the movie earned a respectable $800K this past weekend in sneak preview screenings, followed by A Wrinkle In Time in fourth place with $15.4 million and I Can Only Imagine with $7.2 million. The top 10 will likely be rounded out by Strangers: Prey at Night ($5.1 million), Red Sparrow ($4.2 million), Game Night ($3.8 million), Peter Rabbit ($3.2 million) and Death Wish ($2.9 million). While it’s possible that 7 Days in Entebbe could crack the top 10, with the movie debuting in just 800 theaters, it seems unlikely.
Also debuting in limited release this weekend is Screen Media Films’ Josie, The Orchard’s Flower, IFC’s Furlough, Indican’s The Happys, Good Deed’s Journey’s End and Vertical Entertainment’s Tilt. Looking ahead to next weekend, five newcomers will hit theaters in wide release, with Universal’s Pacific Rim Uprising, Open Road Films’ Midnight Sun, Paramount’s Sherlock Gnomes, Bleecker Street’s Unsane and Sony’s Paul, Apostle of Christ. Take a look at our top 10 projections for the weekend of March 16, and check back on Sunday for the top 10 estimates, courtesy of Box Office Mojo.
|4||A Wrinkle in Time|
|5||I Can Only Imagine|
|6||Strangers: Prey at Night|