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Box Office Report: 'The Vow,' 'Safe House' Racing for $37 Mil-Plus Weekend

The Vow Channing Tatum Rachel McAdams Wedding - H 2012
Screen Gems
"The Vow"

The two films are both overperforming for a record weekend; "Star Wars: Phantom Menace” and “Journey 2” also in a potentially close contest at $23 million.

Sony’s The Vow, starring Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum, may narrowly beat Universal’s Denzel Washingon-Ryan Reynolds starrer Safe House at the Friday box office, but the weekend race is far from over.

What’s known for sure is that both films are vastly overperforming, and each headed for a $37 million to $38 million weekend. Overall domestic box office revenues should hit $170 million thanks to four strong new entries, making for the biggest non-holiday weekend ever in February and up 30 percent over last year.

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The Vow is expected to earn $14.5 million Friday, followed by Safe House with $13.5 million.

One advantage Safe House has -- an A- CinemaScore, versus a B CinemaScore for The Vow. Also, Safe House is playing much more evenly than expected among the genders, with females making up 48 percent of Friday night’s audience. Females made up a whopping 74 percent of The Vow’s audience.

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In terms of age, Safe House is skewing older, however, with 81 percent of Friday night’s audience over the age of 25, compared to 55 percent for The Vow.

Twentieth Century Fox’s 3D re-release of George LucasStar Wars: Episode 1 — The Phantom Menace, is on course to gross $8.5 million on Friday for a $23.5 million weekend. It will compete to some degree with Warner Bros./New Line’s Journey 2: The Mysterious Island for family audiences on Saturday and Sunday.

Journey 2 — receiving an A- CinemaScore — is performing better than expected. It should gross north of $6 million on Friday for a $23 million weekend, putting it in a close race with Phantom Menace.