As it is currently, Open Road’s The Grey starring Liam Neeson looks to be the projected first-place finisher for the week. Opening at an estimated $6.2 million on Friday at 3,185 locations, the Joe Carnahan film could do as much as $18 million by Sunday evening. In second place is Lionsgate’s One for the Money based on the first novel in Janet Evanovich’s bestselling series. Starring Katherine Heigl, it’s opening numbers are skewed due to a Groupon/Living Social discounted movie ticket deal. The same is also true with Sam Worthington’s Man on a Ledge. Anything to push people into theaters to watch either actor, I guess – since both films had little in the way of critic screenings (at least in my region). It looks to be a one and done for Underworld: Awakening, taking a steep 63% earnings lost after opening on top last week. Red Tails has a decent hold for #4, having only dropped 53%.
With the recent Oscar nomination announcements one would expect a boost in attendance, but so far that isn’t the case. Despite its 11 nominations, The Weinstein Company is still playing The Artist on 837 screens. Look for expansion in the coming weeks. The only Oscar Best Picture contenders to see relevancy in the top 10 are Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close and Fox Searchlight’s The Descendants. Thanks to its wide opening last weekend, Extremely Close looks to finish in sixth place, while Alexander Payne’s comedy is on pace to finish in the eighth spot this weekend with $5.6 million earned.
Full box office report coming Monday.