This weekend's box office forecast is anything but murky: "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2" is set to become a clear No. 1 hit.
The 3-D animated film will likely debut with around $45 million in ticket sales, according to those who have seen pre-release audience surveys. That would be a robust start for the sequel, whose predecessor launched with $30.3 million in 2009. (
Three other new films are also hitting theaters nationwide this weekend, though none will gross nearly as much as the second "Cloudy."
After getting off to a decent start in limited release last weekend, the race car flick "Rush" will expand to about 2,300 cinemas and is expected to collect a so-so $10 million.
"Don Jon," actor
"Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2" is the first animated film to be released in almost two months, after a summer packed with cartoons. With little family competition in the marketplace, the $78-million production is poised for a strong box office run that should rival the $243 million the original film took in worldwide.
Sony Pictures Animation, the studio behind the picture, is coming off somewhat of a disappointment with
"Cloudy 2," which has received less positive reviews than the first film, features the voices of
Hoping to capitalize on strong reviews, U.S. distributor Universal Pictures decided to launch "Rush" in five theaters last weekend. The movie ended up with a per-theater average of $37,458 -- a good, but not great, result.
Directed by Ron Howard, the film is based on the rivalry between 1970s Formula One drivers James Hunt (
After premiering at the
At 32, Gordon-Levitt has become one of Hollywood's brightest young stars. In recent years, the actor has appeared in a number of respected indie successes like
"Baggage Claim" is only the second film from writer-director David Talbert, whose debut came in 2008 with the Katt Williams comedy "First Sunday." First known as a playwright, Talbert went on to write a 2005 novel upon which his latest movie is based.
The Fox Searchlight release, which is aimed at an African American audience, stars