Box Office Preview: 'Premium Rush,' 'Apparition' to Battle Late-Summer Doldrums
Offbeat indie comedy "Hit & Run" entered the fray Wednesday; "2016: Obama's America" expands nationwide.
Despite generally good reviews, Sony's Joseph Gordon-Levitt action film Premium Rush might not be able to scale the box-office chart as the late-summer doldrums strike.
Most box-office observers believe holdover The Expendables 2 will win the weekend crown, while Premium Rush will battle it out for No. 2 with The Bourne Legacy.
Conservative estimates show Premium Rush earning in the $6 million to $8 million range. The film cost just north of $30 million to produce and is directed by noted screenwriter David Koepp, who co-wrote the script with John Kamps.
Premium Rush centers on a New York City bicycle messenger (Gordon-Levitt) who is pursued throughout the city by a dirty cop (Michael Shannon) who wants an envelope the messenger has. Gavin Palone produced.
Two other new features are competing for attention at the domestic box office: quirky indie comedy Hit & Run and Dark Castle's supernatural thriller The Apparition, which Warner Bros. is distributing.
On the documentary front, anti-Barack Obama film 2016: Obama's America expands nationwide on the eve of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. The film, distributed by Rocky Mountain Pictures, will be playing in a total of 1,091 theaters as of Friday. On Thursday, online ticket service Fandango reported that Obama's America was the top advance seller.
Hit & Run, from Open Road Films, opened Wednesday to build word-of-mouth heading into the weekend. The pic starring Dax Shepard, Kristen Bell, Bradley Cooper and Tom Arnold is expected to open in the $7.5 million to $8 million range after coming in No. 8 on Wednesday, earning a muted $625,000.
Directed by David Palmer and Shepard, Hit & Run is a romantic action comedy about a former getaway driver who emerges from witness protection to help his girlfriend get to California. It was produced for less than $2 million, excluding a nationwide marketing spend.
Apparition, directed by Todd Lincoln and starring Twilight's Ashley Green, might not eke past $2 million in its debut.
New offerings at the specialty box office include director-producer Linda Goldstein Knowlton's acclaimed documentary Somewhere Between, about the wave of Chinese girls who were adopted and brought to the U.S. because of the strict one-child policy in China.
Somewhere Between, a festival favorite and winner of the jury prize at Hot Docs, opens at the IFC Center in New York on Friday before debuting in Los Angeles in mid-September.
Indie comedy Sleepwalk With Me, co-written by Ira Glass, also debuts at IFC Center this weekend.