Box Office Preview: '1917' to March Past 'Star Wars' After Golden Globes Victory

1917_8_Still - Publicity - H 2019
Universal Pictures

Michael B. Jordan's 'Just Mercy,' Tiffany Haddish's 'Like a Boss' and Kristen Stewart's 'Underwater' also unfurl nationwide.

If timing is everything, 1917 already deserves a medal of honor.

Sam Mendes' acclaimed World War I drama expands nationwide this weekend after pulling off an upset at the Golden Globes, winning top honors for best motion picture and director.

The feature should see a nice boost from its Globes victory after already posting strong numbers in its limited box office run. 1917 debuted in 11 theaters in seven cities on Christmas Day, in a bid to build word of mouth, and has grossed north of $2.5 million to date after scoring the top location average of the year-end holiday season.

Mendes' pic, from Universal and Amblin Entertainment, is tracking to gross $20 million to $25 million over the weekend, enough to topple Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and marking one of the best starts of all time for a period war drama, not adjusted for inflation.

The awards contender begins its nationwide assault on the eve of Oscar nominations (Jan. 13).

Among other period war movies, Angelina Jolie's Unbroken opened domestically to $30.1 million in December 2014, while Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk launched to $50.5 million in summer 2017.

1917, which cost roughly $90 million to produce before marketing, was filmed to appear as if it were unfolding in one continuous shot (Roger Deakins was the cinematographer).

Just Mercy, another awards hopeful that opened in select cinemas over the holidays, will also expand nationwide this weekend. The legal thriller, directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, stars Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx.

From Warner Bros., Just Mercy is tracking to gross in the high teen millions after earning roughly $418,000 to date from four theaters in New York and Los Angeles.

On the comedic side, Paramount will bow Like a Boss, the first R-rated studio comedy of 2020. The female-skewing pic stars Tiffany Haddish, Rose Byrne and Salma Hayek and focuses on two best friends whose beauty company is targeted by a cosmetics titan. Miguel Arteta directed the film.

Like a Boss could earn as much as $15 million. Paramount is suggesting in the low teen millions.

For the genre crowd, there's the sci-fi thriller Underwater, starring Kristen Stewart, T.J. Miller and Vincent Cassel as a team of researchers who encounter mysterious creatures at the bottom of the ocean after an earthquake cripples their subterranean laboratory. Chernin Entertainment produced the film for 20th Century Fox, which is now owned by Disney.

Tracking is projecting an $8 million to $10 million debut for Underwater.