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Box Office Wizard (5.21.10)

Get your Wiz on. Don't be shy and enter Player Affinity's weekly box office prediction competition. All you have to do is read this post and comment according to my mind-numbingly simple instructions and you could be on your way to Dumbledorian levels of accomplishment.

All we want you to do is get out your box office crystal balls and tells us which five movies will place in the top five of each weekend's U.S. domestic box office chart. Simple enough, right? I will make my own predictions here and explain them to you each week to give you some sort of reference point. It's then your job to enter a comment with your top five. 

This is Week #4. The first week you predict is the first week you enter the Box Office Wizard competition. For every correct prediction each week, you earn a point. Points are cumulative. The game keeps going on and on forever and ever except we will reset everyone back to zero -- let's say -- once a year. Each week there will be at least two winners: a weekend wizard for the users who guessed the most correct and a box office wizard for the user with the most points to date. The goal is to be Box Office Wizard for as long as you can. I'll pick an end date for the year at some point and then whoever has the most becomes the year's box office wizard. Maybe by the team that happens, Player Affinity will be so wildly popular that we'll have some cool free stuff to give the Box Office Wizard of the Year. Regardless, it's worth giving a try. What do you have to lose?

Week #3 Wizard(s): Steven C (me), SimonSays - 5 pts each
Current Box Office Wizard: Steven C - 12 Pts 

Currently, Steven C is the Box Office Wizard with 12 Pts. Both SimonSays and myself are on a perfect top five streak of two weeks in a row. If this were NBA Jam and not Box Office Wizard, we'd be close to becoming on fire and dominating. GamerGeek and Olly had too much faith in A Nightmare on Elm Street whereas old reliable How to Train Your Dragon came through at the fifth spot for Simon and me. 

ALL-TIME TOTALS
Steven C - 12
SimonSays - 10
Olly H - 9
TheGamerGeek - 7

Remember, only submissions in the comment section count and they must be made by 12:01 AM SATURDAY. Check our weekly recap posting late afternoon every Monday for the box office figures of the weekend. Remember, we count the WEEKEND ACTUALS, not the ESTIMATES announced on Sundays.


Here are last week's top five finishers and this week's new contenders followed by my predictions.

Last Week's Top Five
  1. Iron Man 2 - $52.0 M (weekend) … $211.2 M (gross)
  2. Robin Hood - $36.0 M … $36.0 M          
  3. Letters to Juliet - $13.5 M … $13.5 M
  4. Just Wright - $8.2 M … $8.2 M
  5. A Nightmare on Elm Street - $4.7 M … $56.0 M
New Contenders this Weekend

Shrek Forever After
Directed by Mike Mitchell
Written by Josh Klausner, Darren Lemke
Starring: (voices) Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz, Antonio Banderas
Genre: Animation/Family/Adventure
Distributor: Paramount - DreamWorks
Release: 4,359 theaters 




MacGruber

Directed by Jorma Taccone
Written by Jorma Taccone, John Solomon, Will Forte
Starring: Will Forte, Kristen Wiig, Val Kilmer, Ryan Phillippe
Genre: Action/Comedy
Distributor: Universal
Release: 2,400 theaters 




My Top Five Predictions

Things get a bit more interesting now that we're into weekend number three for the summer. The top spot, however, is indisputable. Shrek 2 and Shrek the Third are No. 12 and No. 6 respectively on the list of all-time box office weekends. I think the novelty of the franchise has certainly worn off and we've never seen a fourth sequel to an animated film not go straight to DVD, but it will still be a big number. Even if it's not more than $100 million like both films, Shrek Forever After will easily finish first -- my guess is about $80 million. I just don't see this film outdoing its predecessors after the poor reception critically for the third movie. 

Iron Man 2 will not drop nearly as much as it did from its first week, but since it's still at a high number, it will appear significant. That's how these mega-hits work. I see close to a 50 percent drop, giving Marvel and Paramount roughly $25-$28 million for weekend number three. Robin Hood should see a similar drop to about $18 million.

MacGruber
 
 would have to defy a lot of history to do better than fourth. I think you can expect better-than-late-'90s numbers and there's a distinct possibility it makes back its miniscule production budget of a reported $10 million in its first weekend. I'm going to be kind and say $12 million. Sliding them all down, this would leave Letters to Juliet with the final slot of the weekend, taking in about $7 million. Just Wright and How to Train Your Dragon won't even come close to contending with it, regardless of the thousands of theaters I suspect Paramount will yank "Dragon" out of with Shrek coming to town.

  1. Shrek Forever After
  2. Iron Man 2
  3. Robin Hood
  4. MacGruber
  5. Letters to Juliet

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