‘Elvis’ targets $30+ opening in box office battle against ‘Top Gun’

It’s a showdown of the 20th century at the box office this weekend, with baby boomer epic “Elvis” battling the Gen X revamp “Top Gun: Maverick” for the top spot on the national charts.

Director Baz Luhrmann’s biopic of the King of Rock and Roll is set to gross $30 million from 3,906 theaters when it opens. It would be the second-best North American opening of the Australian filmmaker’s career, behind the $50 million debut of his 2013 adaptation “The Great Gatsby.” The film, which stars Austin Butler and Tom Hanks, could also mark the highest non-franchise domestic opening since the start of COVID-19, potentially surpassing the $30.4 million debut of Paramount’s “The Lost City.” earlier this spring.

It’s a good start for “Elvis”. The release of Warner Bros. garnered largely loving reviews from critics, many of whom pointed to star Butler’s turn as Presley. Variety Chief film critic Owen Gleiberman wrote that the actor “has bedroom eyes and cherub lips and nails the king’s electrostatic moves”, although “his Elvis likeness never quite strikes you in the face.” Solar plexus”. “Elvis” earned a 68% favorable approval rating from top critics on Rotten Tomatoes; audiences also seem to be receptive, with the film earning an “A-” rating from research firm CinemaScore.

These are two strong signs for “Elvis”, which will have to show perseverance in order to recover its production budget of 85 million dollars from national cinemas. The film arrives with a long running time of 159 minutes – though that’s only 12 minutes longer than last week’s box office winner “Jurassic World Dominion.” Plus, since it documents the life of a mid-20th-century icon, the biopic is expected to be older than a franchise play; 60% of the film’s audience would be over 35 years old. Word of mouth is becoming a key factor in determining the financial success of releases like “Elvis.”

Even with Luhrmann’s film drawing in a subdued opening, the biopic faces stiff competition for the No. 1 spot at the domestic box office, like “Jurassic World Dominion,” “Lightyear,” and The Tour de Force of summer box office, “Top Gun: Maverick”, all continue to attract audiences.

Horror film “The Black Phone” also comes out this weekend, having pulled in $3 million from previews on Thursday. Universal expects the Ethan Hawke vehicle to gross $23.25 million from 3,150 locations through Sunday.

“The Black Phone” has a good chance of turning a profit on a budget of just $18 million before marketing and distribution — the unwavering credo of Blumhouse Productions, the producer behind other “low-risk, low-risk” genre plays. high-reward” such as “Get Out”, “Happy Death Day” and “Mom”. With critics and audiences digging the film — a total of 77% top reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and a “B+” rating on CinemaScore — the horror flick is off to a strong start.

“Top Gun: Maverick” refuses to back down from the national charts. Some analysts predict that the Tom Cruise sequel, which was co-financed and co-produced by Skydance, will end up with the top spot on the domestic charts when all is said and done, and in its fifth weekend of release no less.

Paramount is predicting a $30 million haul for its follow-up to 1986’s “Top Gun,” marking a dramatic 33% drop from its previous outing. It would be the second-biggest fifth domestic weekend for a movie that debuted in wide release, behind “Avatar,” which grossed an additional $42 million at this point in its run. “Maverick” will push its domestic gross past $520 million through Sunday as the film aims to top $1 billion worldwide gross in the coming days.

“Jurassic World Dominion” is looking to take bronze on the national charts. Universal expects its dino sequel to add $26 million in its third weekend of release, down 56% from the previous weekend. After making a massive $143 million debut, “Dominion” has continued to hold up relatively well. The film is expected to increase its domestic gross over $300 million through Sunday, making it the fourth-highest-grossing domestic release of the year behind “The Batman.”

Disney’s “Lightyear” will complete the top five. The animated spinoff drew $5.4 million in ticket sales on Friday, aiming to expand its domestic haul past $89 million through the weekend. Pixar’s production was somewhat underperforming, opening at No. 2 under “Jurassic World Dominion” last weekend. In the 21st century, all but four Pixar films have exceeded a domestic gross of $200 million. With “Lightyear” facing competition for family audiences from “Minions: The Rise of Gru” next weekend, the “Toy Story” spinoff could become the fifth release to fall short of that benchmark.

Some analysts project “Lightyear” will gross $18 million over the weekend. However, if the film exceeds expectations, this weekend could mark the first time since 2016 that the top five films each earned more than $20 million on the domestic charts. Whether or not that happens, the diversity of performing options marks a notable victory for the movie industry after operations shut down throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Audiences of all ages, interested in different types of films, returned to the cinema.

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