Sylvester Stallone enlists some of the biggest action-adventure stars of the ’80s and ’90s in a veritable last hurrah on the big screen in his movie “The Expendables.” It looks like his strategy may pay off. The film is expected to crush the competition this weekend.
Early estimates peg the film to do in the $30 million-plus range, according to Paul Dergarabedian is president of the Box Office Division of Hollywood.com.
That’s despite the debut of Julia Roberts’ chick-flick with Javier Bardem, “Eat, Pray, Love,” based on the widely acclaimed book by the same name by Elizabeth Gilbert.
Stallone, 64, not only stars in but directs the film, which inlcudes a supporting cast of Jason Statham, Jet Li, Randy Couture, Dolph Lundgren and former wrestler “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.
In contrast, “Eat, Pray, Love” is expected to gross in the $20 million range, but should also generate solid word-of-mouth and respectable returns over the long haul.
With exotic locations, decent performances and a very “un-Expendable”-style sensitivity, women will be lining up to follow this romantic journey of enlightenment that features one of the biggest female stars in the world, says Dergarabedian.
In the battle for third place, it should be “Scott Pilgrim” vs. “The Other Guys,” with grosses in the $15 million to $17 million range.
“Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” starring Michael Cera will attempt to wrestle the fanboy demographic away from Sony’s “The Other Guys,” last weekend’s No. 1 film, but not without a major challenge from stars Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg.
Of course, Warner Bros.’ “Inception” will continue to be a factor in the top-five derby with yet another impressively small drop in the mid to high 30 percent range that will likely land it in fifth place with a gross of more than $10 million.
A major box office milestone is also in the cards this weekend as Disney’s “Toy Story 3” looks to become only the 11th film in history to cross the $400 million mark in domestic revenue.
Paul Dergarabedian is president of the Box Office Division of Hollywood.com. and has been providing box office information to The Associated Press for nearly two decades.