Box Office: WikiLeaks Pic 'The Fifth Estate' Bombing Friday
Prospects are grim for Bill Condon's The Fifth Estate, which is doing dismal business at the Friday box office and may not cross $4 million in its North American debut.
From DreamWorks and Participant Media, the movie stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Julian Assange, the controversial founder of WikiLeaks. Insiders close to the project concede that Americans may have little interest in WikiLeaks or its founder.
In a recent interview conducted via Skype last weekend with members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Assange predicted the movie's failure, saying it doesn't provide the sort of underdog story moviegoers want.
Fifth Estate, drawing a mixed response from critics, cost $26 million to make.
Elsewhere at the box office, it now appears Kimberly Pierce's Carrie remake, starring Chloe Grace Moretz in the title role opposite Julianne Moore, won't be able to topple Alfonso Cuaron's box office blockbuster Gravity from the top spot.
From Warner Bros., Gravity could gross as much as $30 million in its third weekend, a notable feat.
Carrie, co-financed for under $30 million by MGM and Sony's Screen Gems, is pacing to gross in the $20 million range, as projected by Sony. Other box office observers believed the remake could gross between $20 million and $30 million.
The remake of Carrie opens nearly four decades after Brian De Palma's big-screen adaptation of Stephen King's novel Carrie turned into a sensation, helping to launch the careers of Sissy Spacek and John Travolta.
Fifth Estate isn't the only new offering wilting in its debut. Escape Plan, which teams Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger, may not get to $10 million, despite costing upward of $70 million to produce.
Summit Entertainment and Emmett/Furla films partnered on Escape Plan, which marks another critical test for Schwarzenegger as he tries to resurrect his acting career after his film The Last Stand bombed.