Martians and CIA Operatives: This Weekend's Box Office Predictions

'The Intern' should have stayed retired, while 'Sicario' looks to break through.


With the overwrought CGI explosions of the summer movie season squarely in the rearview, it’s time to look ahead to what’s in store at the local cineplex. Fall’s here, so let’s get eclectic. Here’s a breakdown of what to look forward to.

What Will Win: The Martian

Ridley Scott is in the middle of a critical slump, with his last few movies failing to live up to some of the other films in his iconic filmography. But early buzz suggests that The Martian will not only be a bona fide hit, it could be a new sci-fi classic. Besides Scott’s gorgeous visuals, a lot of the praise lies with Matt Damon’s lead performance, which should score him some awards nominations when all is said and done. If The Martian is a success it should also help Damon creep up the list of Hollywood’s meaningless but still kind of fun most valuable actors list. Look for the movie to take in upwards of $50 million this weekend.

What Will Disappoint: The Intern

The Intern was disappointing at the box office this past weekend and it will only continue to be more disappointing, but perhaps not through any fault of its own. AARP members love director Nancy Meyers’ brand of geriatric yuks, but any interest to see The Intern this weekend should be swept up by Matt Damon and his baby blues science-ing the shit out of the red planet. While The Intern will undoubtedly earn money on home video, it’ll skip down a few notches at the box office this weekend for fourth or fifth place because of stiff competition.

What Will Surprise People: Sicario

Director Denis Villeneuve’s drug thriller has been playing in limited release the past couple of weeks, where it has been doing respectable numbers, making over $1.5 million in just 59 theaters last weekend alone. This week sees the film expand to more than 2,500 theaters across the country, so look for it to take a sizable chunk of the box office receipts for those looking to check out Benicio del Toro doing his squinty-eyed threatening thing and Emily Blunt being an all around badass. It most likely won’t beat out last week’s top film, the animated Hotel Transylvania 2, but it should pull in around $15 million, for third place.

What’s On the Horizon: Pan

The whitewashed Peter Pan origin story that nobody asked for and nobody wanted will fly into theaters next weekend, but hopefully fly directly out of them a couple of weeks after that.

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