March 17 Weekend Forecast: 'Beauty and the Beast', 'The Belko Experiment'

The most anticipated film this weekend is Beauty and the Beast, Disney’s $160M live-action remake of the 1991 classic animated musical film. The original was the first animated film to ever be nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards, and it achieved the third-highest box office of that year on a November release — behind summer juggernauts Terminator 2: Judgment Day and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. As a result, the Emma Watson-helmed remake has high expectations to live up to.

Forecasts for this weekend are below. All dollar amounts are rounded to the nearest thousand, and represent domestic opening only. A larger confidence interval may represent greater variance. Confidence intervals may not be normally distributed.

Title Lower Bound Mean Upper Bound
Beauty and the Beast $142,710,000 $145,695,000 $148,679,000
The Belko Experiment $4,033,000 $4,845,000 $5,656,000

Beauty and the Beast

On the high end, our models project Beauty and the Beast to open at almost $149M. This would be the 15th largest opening weekend of all time, just above Furious 7. Each of the films in positions 1 through 14 is rated PG-13 and part of a multi-installment franchise, while only 6 of those films are not adaptations of Marvel or DC Comics — Jurassic World (2015), Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens (2015), Rogue One (2016), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 (2011), The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013), and The Hunger Games (2012).

Disney’s previous live-action remake of Cinderella (2015) debuted to a respectable $68M opening weekend, and its live-action remake of The Jungle Book (2016) opened to $103M. Beauty and the Beast looks to be the biggest opening of 2017, easily topping those two films.

The Belko Experiment

Another Battle Royale-inspired horror survival flick from Blumhouse Productions (via their multi-platform division BH Tilt), The Belko Experiment is sharp counterprogramming against the family-friendly Beauty and the Beast. Although the film somewhat resembles Blumhouse megahit The Purge, it instead looks to make a small theatrical splash at $4-5M before likely finding a second wind on VOD.

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