Summer Box-Office Forecast: Studio-by-Studio Breakdown
Warners is without a sure thing, Universal pushed back "Fast & Furious 7" and a flurry of untested titles will vie to become the next tentpole franchise.
Summer 2013 releases: 8; Summer 2014 releases: 7
Summer 2013 total: $2.39B
The buzz: The studio that invented franchises has no sure thing
Red flag Alert! The home of DC Comics and Harry Potter faces a summer without a prebranded hero franchise. And its most anticipated film, Godzilla (pictured, May 16), faces a huge challenge: Redeem the monster lizard 16 years after Roland Emmerich's update was laughed off the big screen. Bryan Cranston stars in the $160 million-plus production. Insiders say Edge of Tomorrow (June 6) and the Channing Tatum-Mila Kunis epic Jupiter Ascending (July 18) might do better overseas, akin to 2013's Pacific Rim. Both were pricey: Edge cost $175 million to $200 million, and Jupiter cost as much as $150 million.
Exhibitors, treated to footage of Clint Eastwood's Jersey Boys (June 20), say it is an odd choice for the 83-year-old filmmaker but believe it will play to older patrons and fans of the musical.
Warners also is banking on comedy, with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore's Blended (May 23) and Melissa McCarthy's Tammy (July 2). "[Blended] is one of the best-testing comedies we've seen," says Fellman of the film, in which the stars play single parents trapped on an African safari.
A secret weapon could be New Line's modestly budgeted tornado pic Into the Storm (Aug. 8).