So here are my predictions for the big Fourth of July movie weekend. There are three big openings July 1. The Legend of Tarzan, The BFG, and The Purge: Election Year.
We all know who Tarzan is, and Warner Bros. has spent $180 on a new retelling of the Edgar Rice Burroughs story that has been brought to the screen in countless versions since 1918. I don’t know if you’re going to recognize him in this version. They hired David Yates, the Harry Potter director, to helm this one. From what I’ve read in publicity released in advance of the movie, it was all shot on sound stages in the UK with only exterior shots filmed in Gabon.It’s going to be heavy on CGI. Tarzan starts out seeming more gentrified than in previous incarnations. It’s an all new story, not another remake of Tarzan the Ape Man, and will have to make $400 million in order to make a profit, according to Variety. . Who’s the market for this?
BFG is a Stephen Spielberg film about a boy and a giant. Based on a Roald Dahl story, it seems like an odd choice for a summer blockbuster. Most people don’t seem to know what it’s about, or never heard of the book. Spielberg has been predicting the end of big blockbusters if too many “tent pole” productions flop at the box office. You wonder if he’s trying to make that a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Finally, there is Purge 3: Election year. This is the third in a successful series of films aimed at the market that matters most– teens looking for a date movie on Saturday night. The first two in the series grossed $200 million.
So here’s how I see it:
No. 1: The Purge 3: Election Year ($32 million opening weekend)
No. 2: The Legend of Tarzan ($29 million)
No. 3: BFG ($25 million).