Bold Box Office Predictions: Dory vs. The Rock

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Notable Openings This Weekend: Central Intelligence, Finding Dory

In a summer full of underwhelming box office and apathy, this weekend showcases the safest movie we’ll see all summer. Unless an asteroid hits the earth, Finding Dory is the most stone cold lock you can imagine for big summer bucks. It’s absurd what Disney is doing to the box office. Zootopia. The Jungle Book. Captain America: Civil War. *cough*Alice Through the Looking Glass *cough*. Now we can add Finding Dory to the list of potential billionaires. Oh yeah, they also have another MCU and Star Wars film later this year. This isn’t just Holy Matza. This is Holy Fried Matza. We’re not here to go through Disney’s entire line-up though. We’re here to see if Finding Dory can break the all-time opening record for animated features. We also have a Dwayne Johnson/Kevin Hart comedy to go over, where my feelings can best be described like this:

Pixar has made a lot of iconic films. Other than Toy Story, Finding Nemo may be at the top of the list. While Monsters Inc. was popular, and many fans no doubt are drooling for The Incredibles 2, I’m not sure those original films were as big as Nemo. Everybody saw this one. As far as Pixar goes, it’s right in the middle for me. I have zero interest in this film, but it’s Pixar, so I’m obligated to see it at some point. We know the movie is going to clean up. The real question is will it be record breaking?

Central Intelligence Poster

There are two records we’re looking at here. The Pixar record, held by Toy Story 3 ($110+ Million), and the overall weekend record for animated features, held by everybody’s favorite movie, Shrek the Third ($121+ Million). While it won’t over take Toy Story 3’s overall box office, Finding Dory should swim past that opening number. As far as Shrek the Third, call me crazy, but it’s just going to miss out by an ogre’s ear. As strange as it is, I don’t feel like Finding Dory was completely shoved in my face.  There’s certainly been marketing left and right, but $121+ Million is a tall order.

Now that we got the kiddie film out of the way, it’s time for the adults. When I saw Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (ugh), a trailer for Central Intelligence came on. I swear on my Drive DVD, there wasn’t a single laugh for that entire trailer. You would think this would be the audience to laugh at it, but no one did. I could see this tanking, but the power of Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart should will this to a respectable number north of $20 Million. It certainly won’t bomb, but it will be disappointing, especially considering the run these guys have been on. This is a movie I just want to get through and move on with my life.

HOW WILL IT ALL BREAK DOWN…

Finding Dory will have a record breaking weekend, but not all the records.  It tops the Pixar mark, but falls short of the all-time opener for animated features.  At the end of the day though, nobody will be shedding tears for little Dory.  Central Intelligence does fine.  The Conjuring 2 holds up nice.  Warcraft does not.

1. Finding Dory — $118 Million

2. Central Intelligence – $25 Million

3. The Conjuring 2 – $23 Million

4. Now You See Me 2 — $12 Million

5. Warcraft — $11.5 Million

Daniel Cohen is the hard-boiled Film Editor for the Pop Break. Besides reviews, Daniel writes box office predictions, Gotham reviews and Oscar coverage. He can also be found on the Breakcast. If Daniel was sprayed by Scarecrow's fear toxin, it would be watching Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen on a non-stop loop.