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Box Office Wizard (2.25.11)

Welcome to the NEW Box Office Wizard, Player Affinity’s premiere movie box office prediction competition and your chance every week to feel like a flippin’ genius – nay – wizard. Entering is and always has been simple. You read through this post and leave a comment with, in order, what you think the top five box office finishers will be that weekend. Finish out 2011 on top and you will win something COOL.

WANT FIVE BONUS POINTS??? In your comments, leave your official wizard name. Be creative. See some example names in our Wizarding Leaderboard.

Below you’ll find another recap of the rules, last week’s Top Five, current BOW Standings, a list of new movies getting wide releases this weekend and some details and then finally an explanation of my Top Five predictions to give you a starting point.

This is Week 7. 

How it Works: For every movie you correctly place in the box office top five (say you pick “The Land Before Time XXVI,” to rank second in the box office that weekend and it comes in second), you earn a point. Only if a movie is in its correct place can you earn a point. (You could have all top five movies out of order and get a fat 0, it happens.) Points are cumulative. We will also keep track of the percentage you have correct.

So, let’s say you’ve played for four weeks and missed only four movies. You then have 16 Cumulative Points out of 20 and a prediction percentage of 75%. Not too shabby. Someone else could have 64 CP out of 110 and be ahead of you in CP, but behind you (58%) in percentage. You must, however, have played 8 weeks to be eligible for the Percentage crown. When the year is up, whoever has the most cumulative points and whoever the highest percentage (could be the same person) wins the title of Box Office Wizard 2011.

Official Scoring/The Fine Print:

  • Only submissions in the comment section count.
  •  Predictions must be in by Noon (the time zone you’re in) the Saturday after the weekly post goes up.
  • Only the Weekend Actuals (released Monday afternoons) count as the official totals, not the estimates that most news sources     publish Sunday afternoons.
  • On holiday weekends that start early or end late, only the three-day Friday through Sunday totals count.
  • Look for Dinah Galley’s box office recap on Mondays for the weekend’s results (not always the actuals, so look closely)

Last Week's Top Five 

1.  Unknown - $21.7M (weekend)…$21.7M (gross)
2.  I Am Number Four - $19.5M…$19.5M

3.  Gnomeo and Juliet - $19.4M…$50.4M
4.  Just Go With It - $18.2M…$60.7M 
5.  Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son - $17.0M…$17.0M

Week #6 Wizard(s):  Jamven and Kieran - 1 pt
Current Cumulative Box Office Wizard(s): Cinemus the Predictor (me) - 24 pts
Current Percentage Box Office Wizard(s): None. Must Play 8 Weeks.  

Woof. All the top four finished within $3.5 million of each other and as such we all got ripped. I was surprised none of you predicted Unknown for first. Well, here's to this weekend. Enjoy the Oscars.


Cinemus the Predictor - 24 (19/30 - 63%)
Herpious Derpious - 20 (15/30 - 50%)
Simonius Saysian - 17 (12/25 - 48%)
Lord Jamven Serpenthelm - 15 (10/30 - 30%)
Kieran - 11 (11/30 - 36%)
Julian - 6 (6/10 - 60%)
Max A - 5 (5/10 - 50%)


2010 Box Office Wizard: SimonSays - 97 pts in 34 weeks
2010 Box Office Wizard: Steven C - 97 pts in 34 weeks

New Contenders this Weekend

Hall Pass 
Directed by Peter and Bobby Farrelly
Written by Peter and Bobby Farrelly, Pete Jones and Kevin Barnett
Starring: Owen Wilson, Jenna Fischer, Jason Sudeikis, Christina Applegate
Genre: Comedy
Distributor: Warner Bros./New Line
Release: 2,950 theaters 

Drive Angry 3D 
Directed by Patrick Lussier
Written by  Todd Farmer and Patrick Lussier
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard, William Fichtner
Genre: Action
Distributor: Summit
Release: 2,290 theaters 

My Box Office Predictions

I'm tentative to pick Hall Pass for No. 1, but Nic Cage and movies like that are wildly unpredictable. I think the Farrelly Brothers can get at least a typical $15 million or so, maybe even $17 or 18 M. Their last film had Ben Stiller and only opened with $14 million, but I think the concept behind their latest will attract the adult audience more than their previous endeavors.

I'm not even sure I like Drive Angry 3D for second, but to keep the rest of my predictions intact should it do well, I'm going to pick it anyway. Reason is, we've seen male-skewing fanboy-targeted films disappoint at the box office such as Kick-Ass, also starring Cage.

When 3D was fresher, My Bloody Valentine 3D (same team behind "Angry") made $21 million but that appealed to the horror audience. This film doesn't. The most similar recent film was Piranha 3D, which opened with just $10 million, but with no big stars, so I think with Cage's involvement, "Angry" could make as little as $12 million and as much as $16 million maybe. Without any competition for another week, I like Gnomeo & Juliet to finish with no less than $14 million, so Drive Angry will fall on either side.

The final two spots in the top five will also be neck and neck. It's hard to envision how much if at all Hall Pass will effect its fellow two-week-old comedy, but I think enough so that Unknown edges out Just Go With It. The Liam Neeson thriller probably do a bit better than half what i made last weekend, so I think $11-12 million. Sandler's film has a lower bottom end, maybe $10-12 million. So yes, I think I Am Number Four's lackluster performance and poor reviews damns it to fall off the map this weekend.

It's a crapshoot, but shoot low: only Tyler Perry's "Madea" movies have made more than $20 million in the post-President's Day weekend slot the last several years. 

1. Hall Pass
2. Drive Angry 3D
3. Gnomeo & Juliet
4. Unknown
5. Just Go With It



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