Box Office Report: 'Chronicle,' 'Woman in Black' Scaring Up Strong Business as Super Bowl Weekend Kicks Off
UPDATED: The two films are in a relatively close race at the Friday box office; Drew Barrymore-John Krasinski whale pic follows at No. 3.
Twentieth Century Fox's genre superpower pic Chronicle and CBS Films' horror-thriller The Woman in Black were doing brisk business at the Friday box office as they battled for the No. 1 spot.
Early estimates show Chronicle and Woman in Black grossing $5.5 million to $6.5 million on Friday for a potential $13.5 million to $15.5 million weekend.
Woman in Black could pull ahead of Chronicle for the weekend since it is appealing to younger women, a demo less interested in the Super Bowl than younger man, who are turning out for Chronicle.
Both films are looking to pile up points on Friday and Saturday in advance of Super Bowl Sunday, when moviegoing traditionally drops off dramatically.
The third new film of the weekend is Universal's family friendly whale pic Big Miracle, starring Drew Barrymore and John Krasinski. The movie was in third position out of the gate.
Chronicle, about a group of friends who acquire superpowers and use them to make mischief until one of them begins using them for darker purposes, is tracking best with younger men. Produced for a modest $12 million, the edgy film was directed by Josh Trank and stars Dane DeHaan, Michael B. Jordan and Michael Kelly.
Woman in Black, based on Susan Hill's novel of the same name, was produced by Hammer Film Productions and preemptively acquired by CBS Films just before the Cannes Film Festival last year. Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Ciaran Hinds and Janet McTeer, the ghost story was directed by James Watkins and is showing impressive strength among young women.
Insiders at CBS Films, which acquired Woman in Black for a modest $3 million, say the movie played much broadly than expected during test screenings.
Universal's campaign for Big Miracle has targeted moms and girls, the latter being the demo least interested in football (that's why Disney opened Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour over Super Bowl weekend).
Directed by Ken Kwapis, Big Miracle is based on the 1989 book Freeing the Whales, and tells the story of the international rescue effort to rescue three gray whales trapped in ice near Point Barrow, Alaska. In the movie, Barrymore and Krasinski play a nonprofit aid worker and a government worker who develop a romance.