Nostalgic “Ghostbusters” Won’t Knock Off “Guardians”
Summer 2014 hasn’t been all that impressive at the box office. Save a few breakout films like Guardians of the Galaxy and Maleficent, the rest of the mainstream roster hasn’t been up to par. This Labor Day weekend looks to be no different with Pierce Brosnan’s The November Man, horror flick As Above/So Below and re-release of Ghostbusters.
The November Man had a head start on the four-day frame opening Wednesday in 2,774 theaters. In The November Man, Brosnan is an ex-CIA agent brought out of retirement for one final mission to protect fellow James Bond vet, Olga Kurylenko.
Outside of his four-film run as 007, Brosnan hasn’t been a box office draw. His last film to opening above double digits was Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief over four years ago. And even then, he was a supporting character. The end of summer release date and negative reviews won’t help matters either. The November Man is expected to fall short of $10 million. Its 4-day frame may find itself over that mark.
Horror film, As Above/So Below stands a better chance this weekend at challenging repeat leaders Guardians and Ninja Turtles. As Above/So Below is directed by John Erick Dowdle (Quarantine, Devil), where a team of Americans venture into the catacombs under Paris.
Labor Day weekend has debuted a few breakout horror films. Halloween, The Possession and Jeepers Creepers 2 come to mind. Halloween currently holds onto the holiday record with $30.6 million. Don’t expect As Above/So Below to open anywhere in that vicinity. If the film opens to even half of that haul, it’ll be on par with Dowdle’s previous films. Quarantine opened to $14 million in 2008, while Devil opened to $12 million in 2010.
As Above/So Below starts Thursday night at 8 p.m. before expanding into 2,500 theaters on Friday. A 3-day opening of $13 million should be expected.
Wrapping up the weekend is the re-release of Ghostbusters. Celebrating its upcoming Blu-ray releases as well as its 30th anniversary, Sony is giving audiences the opportunity to see the classic comedy on the big screen. Ghostbusters will only be in theaters for one week only, giving a small boost to its $238.6 million run from 1984 and subsequent 1985 re-release.
Re-releases like Ghostbusters are not surefire hits, especially with DVD, Blu-ray and streaming at the press of a button. Two years ago, Raiders of the Lost Ark only opened to $1.6 million in a limited IMAX re-release. While the original Star Wars and The Lion King re-releases debuted to over $30 million in 1997 and 2011 respectively.
Ghostbusters opens Thursday night in 775 theaters, triple that of Raiders in 2012. Still, the film will still have issues cracking the Top 10 with a $4-5 million debut.
Box Office Projections
1. Guardians of the Galaxy (Buena Vista) – $15.8 million (1)
2. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Paramount) – $13.6 million (2)
3. As Above/So Below (Universal) – $12.9 million (NR)
4. If I Stay (Warner Bros.) – $12.3 million (3)
5. The November Man (Relativity) – $9.7 million (NR)