‘WALL-E’ Eyeing Third Best Pixar Opening while ‘Wanted’ Surprises

Last night I was shocked to see there were in fact midnight screenings for Pixar’s WALL•E. I don’t know the facts on this, but this has to be the first time a G-rated movie had early midnight screenings on the day of release… Right?

I don’t know how many folks turned out for those midnight screenings, but Steve Mason’s early Friday numbers show WALL•E bowing big on its way to what should be Pixar’s third biggest opening ever right behind The Incredibles and Finding Nemo. Word on the street is WALL•E will hit an estimated $23 million for Friday and turn in a $66 million weekend. Good start I say and I can’t see it falling off for a very long time.

The other new release this week was Wanted starring Angelina Jolie and James McAvoy. While I am starting to regret my “B+” grade, thinking this film is probably more of a “B-” at best it seems the majority of positive reviews helped in getting audiences into the theaters as the special effects driven assassin story opened to an estimated $18.5 million weekend with expectations to reach $48 million for the weekend. This is a number that is far higher than most prognosticators projected, including our very own Oracle, as Laremy projected it at $15 million less although if that WALL•E number holds up he will have only missed that one by $2 million.

Get Smart has a grip on third place with an estimated $7 million on its way to a $22.6 million weekend. Kung Fu Panda will grab fourth with an estimated $3.5 million for Friday and $12.1 for the weekend. Rounding out the top five is another big drop for The Incredible Hulk, with expectations to grab a dismal $9.2 million for the weekend giving it just over $115 million since its release, which is still far shy of its $150 million price tag as well as the $132 million the 2003 Ang Lee edition pulled in.

Perhaps the best news of the weekend is that Mike Myers’s craptastic Love Guru will not be able to hold a top five spot in its second weekend as it is expected to come in sixth with an estimated $2 million on Friday and $6.25 million for the weekend. This would give it a total of just over $26 million since its release. Man, there have got to be $26 million worth of unhappy people walking out of that film.

Finally, it looks like Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is going to hit that $300 million mark after all. Following what is expected to be a seventh place finish this weekend the man in the hat will bounce just over the triple-century mark making it the second film to do so this year after Iron Man. The big question now is if WALL•EHancock or The Dark Knight have it in them to pull it off as well. It certainly is going to be a battle.

Mason’s complete estimates are listed below, tune back in on Sunday for Laremy’s complete recap of the weekend.

  1. WALL•E (Disney) – $23 million
  2. Wanted (Universal) – $18.5 million
  3. Get Smart (Warner Bros) – $7 million
  4. Kung Fu Panda (Dreamworks/Paramount) – $3.5 million
  5. The Incredible Hulk (Universal) – $2.7 million
  6. The Love Guru (Paramount) – $2 million
  7. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Paramount) – $1.5 million
  8. The Happening (Fox) – $1.47 million
  9. Sex and the City (Sony) – $1.39 million
  10. You Don’t Mess With The Zohan (Sony) – $1.27 million


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