Summer Box Office Fantasy Handicapping Part 2

Summer Box Office Fantasy Handicapping Part 2

Welcome to part 2, if you missed part 1 or the Laws of the Game, check them here. Also all titles are links to the trailers so you can check out the flicks for your self.

Group 3: Good niche market films that will be a big hit for us if they really turn out well, and are going to be the sleeper hits of the summer

Films like these have an initially smaller built-in audience and play strong to certain demographics. If word of mouth is good, then these kinds of films take off. They do not usually open big, but they have great box office legs (and for those of you that are not familiar with the term legs; it is used in the industry for a film that earns its money over a long box office run).

19. The Five Year Engagement -

The Bridesmaids of this summer. A raunchy chick flick that has some heart. It’s from Judd Apatow, so you know that there will be some serious moments, along with someone shitting themselves in public. If Jason Segal (which I am extremely happy he is the lead and not that complete lack of talent hack Seth Rogen) and Emily Blunt have great chemistry. If fhe jokes are there, then you could have a hit on your hands. If they don’t and it’s too serious, then you have a Year One or Wanderlust on your hands. With a new coach and some talent in place, especially on the defensive side of the ball, the Dolphins are on the edge of being a good team. Matt Moore is similar to Segal in that they are both on the edge of being legitimate leads that can carry a movie or team. Both have succeeded at times (Segal on TV and as a supporting role and Moore, when the season was already in the crapper). A good year or opening could legitimatize both. Box Office Projection: $85 to 115 mil – Release Date: 4/27 (After writing this I realized that Matt Moore is not the answer, but I was running out of teams so here we are… and Jason Segal has carried a few movies to moderate success, but usually he has had another strong more recognizable lead opposite him)

18. Rock of Ages -

Will I be going to see a musical with an outstanding cast about making it in the rock scene? No, hell no…but is there a market? You bet. I blame this on Glee. If those little bitches would have died out after five episodes like most of the shows on Fox, we would not have these movies coming about, but they did not. Now we have at least 4 or 5 Broadway hits a year that are being made into movies. They are usually staring big actors who can NOT sing. Why do this? These productions are meant to be on the stage, not in our theaters. I do not need to see Tom Cruise in mascara playing a rock-n-roll sex god. Rock of Ages, is the NFLs version of the Cardinals. The cast is outstanding. Larry Fitzgerald, Dockett, Peterson, Wells, and others, but it just is not appealing to most people, especially with Kolb or Skelkton pulling the strings. They will still probably end up around 8-8, which is where Rock of Ages will as well. Box office Projection: $100 mil. Release Date: 6/15

17. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter -

This is an interesting one to predict. It has a hot director, a built in cult following, Vampires, and an interesting premise. The trailer looks great, although alittle too CGI, but so did Wanted when I first saw it, and it turned out great. Timur Bekmambetov is Cam Newton right now. He’s been successful on every level (hugely successful in European cinema before jumping to Hollywood / Dominated H.S. and college before taking over and breaking records in his rookie season). Now everyone wants a piece of him. The follow up for both will be extremely important, if AL:VH is successful and another good/great film like Wanted, then Timur will be given a blank check. Cam already has the attention of the league and the national media. If he falters, then it might be a while before anyone looks again. Either way the this movie/season is make or break for both, and I for one hope that neither experiences the dreaded sophomore slump. Box Office Projection: $125-150 mil (Homer Projection: $200 mil) Release Date: 6/22

Group 4: Second Tier Sequel/Reboot Brigade

These are not the huge massive franchises, but they still are sequels or reboots to fairly successful movies that have their own fan base. However, they do run the risk of suffering from over-exposure. (Really FOUR Ice Age movies??)

16. American Reunion -

After years of terrible, made for DVD movies, the American Pie series jumps back to the big screen. All of the original cast is returning, which made the first 2 films instant classics. Let’s go back for a second to the original American Pie. This was the first big screen movie since Porky’s to celebrate debauchery and single handily re-launched the raunchy comedy. Before American Pie, High School kids did not talk about sex on screen, nor did they fuck pies for that matter, and American Pie changed all of that. It’s one of my favorite films from my teenage years, and I for one am so excited to see it back on the big screen. For those of you that don’t know, the story follows the original cast as they head home for their high school reunion. Reunion reminds me a lot of the Bengals. All of the pieces are coming back; AJ Green is a beast, and the Red Rocket is pretty damn solid. I expect them to have a solid year, just like Reunion. Box Office Prediction: $115-135 mil – Release Date: 4/6

15. Total Recall -

When you remake a moderately successful 80s movie, the chances in it succeeding are usually very low, especially when you replace Arnold with Colin Farrell. However, after watching the trailer to Total Recall, I am pleasantly surprised. I for one really enjoyed the original (and not just the chick with three boobs). The concept was great, it just looked so dated. So this reboot looks pretty fresh, and I actually really enjoyed Live Free or Die Hard, which was the director’s last effort, so I am excited about this one as well. While people might call me a Tebow-hater, I am actually really excited for him to be in NY. I think it is a perfect place for him. It’s a great fit and he has become what he should have been from the start, a bigger Kordell Stewart. After watching the trailer and the style of Len Wiseman, the director, he was the perfect fit for this movie, just like Tebow in New York. Box Office Predication: $125-150 mil – Release Date: 8/3

14. The Expendables 2 -

Let’s up the ante on just about everything and throw in every action star from the 80s and 90s. Wait, we did that? Well, who did we forget? Van Damme? Norris? The Governator? Hell yeah, let’s get them all in there this time and bring everyone else back. Now, let’s see how Stallone and co’s old ass bodies can hold up and take the pounding? Who cares, we are free from Tebow-Mania (you see what I did there?). Box Office Projection: $100 mil (if it gets an PG-13 rating) $130 mil(if its rated R) – Release Date: 8/17

13. Ice Age: Continental Drift -

Yes, this is the fourth movie in the series. Yes, I still hate Ray Romano and his boring drool. All of the characters are back, including the squirrel thing that chases the nut into some sort of obvious comedic disaster. If these movies had half the heart of a Pixar movie, then they might be bearable, but right now they they are just living on the fact that suburban moms or nannies need a break from their kids for 2 hours during the summer and this is the prefect distraction. Like the Falcons, they are boarderline annoying and yet they will get their wins, but never going to be elite. Sorry, Matty Ice just is not that good, especially since you mortgaged his future protection to Julio Jones. Now you have no picks to upgrade your offensive line, when you are suppose to be a running team. Box Office Projection: $130-150 mil Release Date: 7/13

12. Madagascar 3 -

See above…Replace Ray, Defoe, and co with Ben Stiller, Chris Rock and co, then place them in present day. Instead of the prehistoric times, add a team of dancing special forces penguins. Any Questions? This makes the Texans, the Falcons of the AFC. They have some great pieces, stud running backs and Wideouts, but the QB, while solid, is just not elite. The Texans have a slightly better defense, which for Madagascar is the fact that it is only the second sequel and not the third. Box Office Projection: $140-160 mil – Release Date: 6/8

Group 5: We are right on the edge of having something special here, but it might be a disaster:

11. Neighborhood Watch -

This is running a really fine line right now, with most of the promo materials being pulled in the wake of the Trayvon Martin shooting. While the cast sounds great, Vince Vaughan, Ben Stiller, Jonah Hill and numerous cameos; there is the alien involvement which is troubling. Sci-fi action comedies very rarely work, however, if they do come together like Men in Black, then they are huge hits. If they miss, they join the ranks of other duds: Paul, Galaxy Quest, Meet Dave, Cowboys and Aliens, Evolution, Mars Attacks, Innerspace, The Adventures of Pluto Nash, Dark Star, Dude, Where’s my Car, Demolition Man, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, Earth Girls are Easy, Flatland, Rocketman, that weird one with Robin Williams, Space Truckers, Starship Dave, etc. It is an experiment and if they are able to pull off the right balance of comedy and action, then it will be great. If not, then you are in for an Eddie Murphy special (aka a huge bomb, how he still gets paid is beyond me). Like the Bears this season, if Cutler can stay healthy and Brandon Marshall does not implode, they have a really good team. Those are BIG “ifs”. Box Office Projection: $50-185 mil (could really go either way) – Release Date: 7/27

10. Dark Shadows -

Johnny Depp is a huge box office draw. Combine him with the creepy genius that is Tim Burton and you usually have a big hit on your hands. I mean, did Alice in Wonderland make any sense visually? No, but it still grabbed a $100 mil opening weekend. While I do not think Dark Shadows will do that well, I still think it has the potential to be a big hit. Depp was a 17th century playboy who broke some witch’s heart and she cursed him to be a vampire, burying him alive. He is then awoken centuries later to live in the seventies with his descendants. Only Johnny Depp and Tim Burton could have pitched this movie to a studio and gotten the money to make it. Oh, wait it is based on a seventies soap opera? Yes, that’s right, we are still remaking shitty TV from the 70′s. The whole vampire fish out of his time should generate some laughs, as well as seeing Burton’s take on the 70′s. However it will be up to the rest of the cast to carry the movie, because as good as Depp is, he still needs help. Just like the Cowboy’s wanna-be frat QB, Tony Romo. He might be great, but the defense needs help. So if Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green, and Helena Bonaham-Carter can deliver, Dark Shadows will be successful. However with Ware and co, they still need more help. Box Office Predication: $160-180 mil – Release Date: 5/11

10-B. Ted -

This is a late edition, because I just checked out the recently released red band trailer, and it looks great. I used to hate Mark Wahlburg, not sure why, but now I love him; especially when he does comedy. It just seems to work, and then you throw in the fact that it is written and directed by Seth MacFarland, the Family Guy creator. This looks like a comedy hit. He is also starring as a the foul-mouthed Teddy bear Ted, who lives with Wahlburg. Imagine if you took all of the network censors off Peter Griffin and then mixed he and Brian’s character together; that is what you will be getting with Ted. It’s going to be a good one. No NFL comparison here, because this guy was a late edition. Box Office Prediction: $110-125 mil. Release Date: 7/13

Coming Soon…The Heavyweights! These are your first-round picks based solely on the amount of money the studios have poured into them. If they go down John Carter-styles, heads will roll…So Stay tuned!

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