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Todd Phillips’ R-rated Joker is expected to stay atop the chart in its second weekend, while Ang Lee’s big-budget spectacle Gemini Man, starring Will Smith, could find itself in a tight race for No. 2 with early Halloween family entry The Addams Family.
Joker, which debuted to an October-best $96 million last weekend in North America, is pacing to earn $40 million or more in its sophomore outing after clearing $300 million globally by mid-week.
Gemini Man, from Skydance Media and Paramount, is tracking to open in the mid-$20 million range domestically. Appealing to families, MGM’s CG-animated The Addams Family is also tracking for a similar mid-$20 million domestic bow.
Gemini Man is likely to be dinged by poor reviews; its current Rotten Tomatoes score of 30 percent is the lowest of Lee’s career. The action-thriller, which uses groundbreaking visual effects to feature Smith’s character coming face-to-face with a younger version of himself, cost at least $140 million to produce after rebates and tax incentives and before marketing.
Skydance and Paramount are counting on a boost from higher-priced 3D screens that will showcase the film’s cutting-edge, high-frame-rate technology. Jerry Bruckheimer produced the pic, which is rated PG-13.
Gemini Man is also banking on strong returns overseas, where it will open in an additional 54 markets this weekend after launching in a smattering of territories a week ago to roughly $7 million.
The Addams Family‘s star-studded voice cast is led by Oscar Isaac, Charlize Theron, Chloe Grace Moretz, Finn Wolfhard, Nick Kroll, Bette Midler, Allison Janney, Elsie Fisher and Snoop Dogg. The PG-rated movie was originally set to bow closer to Halloween, but its release date was pushed up to avoid a showdown with Disney’s Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, after the latter title was rescheduled for Oct. 18.
Universal is handling The Addams Family overseas, where it will have a staggered rollout. Bron Creative co-financed the latest big-screen adaptation of the fabled, spooky household.
The weekend’s third new nationwide offering is Jexi, the final theatrical release from CBS Films. Lionsgate is handling the ensemble comedy in the U.S. per its deal with CBS, while eOne has overseas rights.
Jon Lucas and Scott Moore (Bad Moms, The Hangover), wrote and directed the pic, which stars Adam DeVine, Alexandra Shipp, Michael Pena, Rose Byrne, Justin Hartley, Wanda Sykes, Ron Funches and Charlyne Yi.
The awards box office will see the debut of South Korean filmmaker Bong Joon-ho’s acclaimed Parasite. Neon is set to launch the indie pic — boasting a rare 100 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes — in three theaters in New York and Los Angeles.
In May, Parasite was the first Korean film ever to win the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival. It later impressed during stops at the Telluride and Toronto fests.
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