Box Office

2017 Box Office Predictions

2016 was the biggest year in the history of the box office, grossing a total of $11.37 billion (and counting, with “Rogue One” likely to cross the $1B mark in the next week of so). 2017 will likely beat that number, with films like “Fast and Furious 8” (sorry, “The Fate of the Furious”) and “Star Wars: Episode VIII” hitting theaters (gonna be a good year to be the 8th installment of a franchise). And because the only thing I love more than talking about more than movies is talking about the box office, I’ve decided to do long-range predictions for what I think will be 10 of the highest-grossing, if not simply more interesting, films of 2017, as well as what could go right and wrong for them.

Note: I am not necessarily predicting how good these films will be, although that will be taken into account. Also, I will be predicting based on release date, not estimated total.

10.) Fifty Shades Darker (February 10)

What could go right:

Just like with the first film, so many bored housewives and ironic teenagers flock to see this despite the reviews (I’m just assuming it’s going to be awful again), and the first film made $571 million in 2015 (proof that we, as a species, are failing). It’s also worth noting that this trailer broke “The Force Awakens'” record for most-watched trailer (which, again, we take the L).

What could go wrong:

Unlike the first time around, people actually don’t want to spend their hard-earned money to see a film they know is going to be terrible and don’t get caught up in the “must-see worldwide phenomenon” BS.

Prediction: $470 million

fifty-shades-dakota-johnson-anastasia-steele

9.) Logan (March 3)

What could go right:

It is the final time Hugh Jackman will rock the shiny claws and he spent a lot of time “getting the script right” with director James Mangold. Plus it is rated R (thanks to the success of “Deadpool”) and has Patrick Stewart to add some gravitas. 2013’s “The Wolverine” grossed $414.8 million.

What could go wrong:

The R-rating makes the demo smaller (again, that didn’t hurt “Deadpool” but it does cut out 13-year-old boys, who are comic book movies’ biggest fans) and people may have a sour taste in their mouth from “X-Men: Apocalypse,” although that did not feature Jackman.

Prediction: $590 million

logan

8.) Beauty and the Beast (March 17)

What could go right:

Disney is on a hot streak with their adaptations of classic cartoons, with “Cinderella” grossing $543 million in 2015 and “The Jungle Book” making $966 million last April. This one also has an A-list cast like the latter, and Emma Watson is a familiar face. More than anything, this one will appeal to both kids and adults, as the original film’s 1991 release date is fresher in the minds and more prevalent in the childhoods of current parents. It also is one of the most beloved of Disney’s animated films (first-ever animated feature to earn a Best Picture nod) and features their most popular songs, too. This could hit $1 billion, but March is extra crowded this year so I think it’ll stop just short.

What could go wrong:

Not much, although some may argue fatigue from all these remakes (I’m stretching on this one).

Prediction: $850 million

beauty-and-the-beast

7.) The Fate of the Furious (April 14)

What could go right:

The previous film grossed $1.5 billion, good for 6th most all-time, and it’s clear that even though we’re eight films and 16 years deep into this franchise, people are still willing to show up. The addition of Helen Mirren and Charlize Theron will make some people interested as well.

What could go wrong:

The seventh film was a fitting tribute and sendoff to the late Paul Walker, and many argue the series should have concluded there, as well. Meanwhile some will say that the films *have* reached their expiration date and not as many people will be as interested in this since there won’t be any handling of the aforementioned Walker. And it’s worth nothing that while each film has grossed more than the last dating back to the 4th, only “Furious 7” grossed over $790 million.

Prediction: $830 million

fast-furious-8

6.) Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (May 5)

What could go right:

There is a mini-cult following for the first one, Marvel can do no box office wrong, Chris Pratt is a perfect hunk, the May release date is prime blockbuster real estate, the first film made $773 million, blah blah…

What could go wrong:

People get sick and tired of Baby Groot before the movie even opens and/or the script is too silly and self-referential and results in the worst Marvel film since “Thor: The Dark World.”

Prediction: $820 million

guardians-of-the-galaxy-vol-2

5.) Wonder Woman (June 2)

What could go right:

One of the first woman-led superhero films that isn’t “Underworld” or “Resident Evil” and a director of a DC film that isn’t Zach Snyder. Plus Gal Gadot was all but universally praised for her role in “Batman v Superman,” even by those who hated the film. “Batman v Superman” made $873 million and “Suicide Squad” made $745 million.

What could go wrong:

It’s a woman-led superhero film which may turn some people off (read: “Ghostbusters”) and the DC Extended Universe has been met with a lukewarm reception at best. Many are saying this is do-or-die for DC, especially after “Suicide Squad,” the film that was supposed to be the good one and right the train, turned out to be the worst of the franchise to date.

Prediction: $750 million

WONDER WOMAN

4.) Spider-Man: Homecoming (July 7)

What could go right:

Everyone loved Tom Holland’s Spider-Man performance in “Civil War,” Robert Downey Jr. and Michael Keaton being in this adds some interest and fun, Marvel can do no wrong at the box office, Spider-Man films always do (to varying degrees) well financially, blah blah…

What could go wrong:

Producer Amy Pascal (former Sony head whose first film as a producer was the “Ghostbusters” reboot) can’t find the right balance between “original Spider-Man story” and “high school coming-of-age tale” and people get tired of Spider-Man getting rebooted.

Prediction: $950 million

homecoming-2

3.) Thor: Ragnarok (November 3)

What could go right:

People love Marvel movies.

What could go wrong:

People may be more excited for “Justice League” two weeks later, the Thor films are universally accepted as the weakest entries of the MCU, the last Thor film in 2013 is the lone actually bad film of the entire Marvel franchise and the involvement of fan-favorite Tom Hiddleston’s Loki is a mystery.

Prediction: $690 million

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2.) Justice League (November 17)

What could go right:

After years of waiting people finally get to see the epic team come together, the trailer seems lighter in tone compared to “Man of Steel” and “Batman v Superman” and Oscar-winner Chris Terrio has sole-control over the script aka David S. Goyer can’t ruin it with his “jokes.”

What could go wrong:

People give up faith on the DCEU, especially if “Wonder Woman” turns out to be a flop, Zach Snyder still can’t learn how to control a narrative and this receives poor reviews and/or people paid to see “Thor 3” and want to save their money for “Star Wars.”

Prediction: $1 billion

the-justice-league

1.) Star Wars: The Last Jedi (December 15)

What could go right:

Everything.

What could go wrong:

Quite literally nothing.

Prediction: $2 billion

star-wars-episode-vii-the-force-awakens-141

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