‘Dolphins’ and ‘Deed’ battle for No. 1


Still recovering from last weekend’s dismal returns, the film industry is readying for another slow several days. Dolphin Tale 2 and No Good Deed are the two releases hoping to claim the No. 1 spot at the domestic box office. Neither one, however, is expected to open over $20 million.

The first Dolphin Tale was a modest success, opening to just under $20 million three years ago. Overall, the family flick raked in a nice $72.3 million. Unfortunately, this year has been rough for sequels to popular kids’ films: Titles including Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, Rio 2, and How to Train Your Dragon 2 all opened softer than their predecessors. Additionally, returns for the first Dolphin movie were boosted by 3D pricing; Dolphin Tale 2, on the other hand, is not being released in 3D. Still, there remains a good chance Dolphin Tale 2 could surprise the pundits and break the 2014 Curse of the Kids’ Sequel – according to Fandango, the film is out-selling the first Dolphin Tale.

There remains an equally good chance No Good Deed lands at No. 1. Though the film is opening in 2,175 theatres to Tale’s 3,656, it boasts popular stars Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson in the leading roles. It also has producer Will Packer, who produced the 2009 Beyonce thriller Obsessed. Though it’s unlikely Deed will match the Beyonce-fan-fueled $28.6 million opening of Obsessed, it isn’t unreasonable to hope for a bow in the high teens.

The specialty division offers up The Drop this weekend, or the film that features the late James Gandolfini’s final performance. The well-reviewed crime flick also has the likeable Tom Hardy as its star; it may do as much as $2 million worth of business.

Both The Skeleton Twins and The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby have likeable duos of their own: Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader in the former, and Jessica Chastain and James McAvoy in the latter. Twins bows in 15 theatres, while Rigby is opening much smaller, at just four locations beginning today.