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Eric Slay

Han and Eric's (Not-So) Controversial Predictions of 2023

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So...it’s been a while, hasn’t it? I’m not going into a recap over these last couple years. You know 2020 and beyond sucked. You know why it sucked. And you know it was a suckish time for the movies both in 2020 and 2021. Those years sucked so hard there was no point bringing back these predictions for 2021 or even 2022, since nobody knew what was going to happen.

 

Of course, we are now past 2022, which also sucked. In all honesty, it confirmed perhaps our greatest fear. The box office, at least as we used to know it, is dead. While the market has grown to be less diverse and more top-heavy since roughly 2015, 2022 has solidified a new era. A new era where only theme park movies can survive.

 

2022 has proven that the masses now prefer watching movies at home. Casual audiences and holiday bumps aren’t what they used to be. And what few moviegoers remain only come out to see either schlocky horror titles or nostalgic toy commercials. Big-budget roller coasters that solely exist to make merchandise and set up future movies in their silly universe are the only things the GA will accept. Martin Scorsese was right all along, and we didn’t listen to his warnings.

 

There’s the occasional exception of course to this rule. But even the likes of The Lost City, Where the Crawdads Sing, Ticket to Paradise, etc. aren’t making anywhere close to what they would have made 10 years ago. Even five years ago. In fact, the studios themselves don’t care about the box office anymore. They are now in the game of PVOD and streaming services, as theatrical is basically vinyl to executives who care little about cinema as an artform.

 

And even in this hellscape where only nostalgic toy commercials are making money, they’re also suffering, Top Gun and Minions aside. The Marvel Cinematic Universe has been steadily declining in interest because those Disney+ shows have oversaturated the franchise and hurt the movies creatively. DC is rebuilding its strategy...again. Jurassic World ended on a disastrous note and will be dormant for a few more years. Disney Animation and Pixar are “wait for Disney+” affairs now. And recent inflation woes have made it impossible for people to slot moviegoing into their budget. Even the strongest of the lot just aren’t what they used to be.

 

2023 isn’t the litmus test, but our new reality. A reality where only kids commercials find success. And even then, that success isn’t what it used to be in our pre-COVID world. A reality much like the state of linear television and album sales before it, where streaming has killed the thing we love to track. But this new reality can still potentially lead to sleeper hits and compelling stories. So what will our new reality look like? Well, let’s break it down. Break it down with a duo just like Siegfried and Roy or Abbott and Costello, Magic and Kareem or Penn and Teller.

 

You guys know the drill at this point. Han and I go one month per day (or at least try to, because Han’s always busy with stuff), stating what we think every movie is going to do at this point in time. Neither of us have corroborated or shared what our predictions are, so it’ll be a total surprise to the both of us. Which makes things even more fun. We have little to no roadmap, and zero clue on what the majority of these movies look like, so it’ll make things hilarious when they all inevitably fall apart. If you're ready, I'm ready. LET'S DO ITTTTTTTTTTT

 

barbie-barbie-sweep.gif

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January 6

M3GAN: Right off the bat, we’re in for something special. The teaser trailer set social media ablaze and horror fans and Swifties alike have been pushing memes and TikTok dances like crazy. Quorum metrics are very strong, with 30M+ looking like a certainty. The big issue is still its release date, since everybody already spent money on Christmas movies by then, but this honestly has enough strength just on the memes that things will be just fine. This will be a great start for a year that might not be so strong all the way through. 35/100 (2.86x)

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January 13

A Man Called Otto: It looks insufferable to me, but it also looks like catnip for boomers...who granted don’t go to the movies either. But I guess it could do just a little bit more than the usual mid-single digits to the high single digits...I really hate this is considered a good number these days. 9/12/36 (4x)

 

House Party: Comedies are dead and reviews will probably suck, but Quorum metrics are okay, albeit nothing too crazy. And it is targeting an audience that does go out for theaters, so it could squeak by with a double-digit debut and get okay exposure on HBO Max. 12/15/33 (2.75x)

 

Plane: Reports are that every time the trailer ends with the title card, the audience laughs their ass off. That says everything you need to know. 4/6/10 (2.5x)

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January 20

Missing: Searching had an okay $26 million haul back in 2018. Even with inflation, this will probably go sub-10, but its super cheap anyways and will probably find an audience on Netflix. It’ll be fine where it is. 3/9 (3x)

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5 minutes ago, Eric in Boots said:

January 6

M3GAN: Right off the bat, we’re in for something special. The teaser trailer set social media ablaze and horror fans and Swifties alike have been pushing memes and TikTok dances like crazy. Quorum metrics are very strong, with 30M+ looking like a certainty. The big issue is still its release date, since everybody already spent money on Christmas movies by then, but this honestly has enough strength just on the memes that things will be just fine. This will be a great start for a year that might not be so strong all the way through. 35/100 (2.86x)

Is tracking really that good for this? I would love for it to become a hit

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January 6

 

M3GAN: Gonna be real, I think buzz peaked too early on this one. Having the premiere well in advance of the film's release without social reactions or reviews was a dumb move. Social marketing has to go back into overdrive this week to remind audiences it's out soon. That said, M3GAN will still open to strong numbers for an early January horror, just maybe not what some of us were hoping for. Legs will depend how well the film delivers on its campy marketing. 20/55 (2.75x)

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January 13

 

A Man Called Otto: Again, another weird pre-Christmas promotional strategy on this one, but the two week limited release should help generate some buzz. Older audiences still aren't turning out to theaters in full force, and I can't imagine many people under 40 caring about this. Tom Hanks will charm enough for an ok gross. 10/13/40 (4x from 3 day/3.08x from 4 day)

 

Plane: Our boy :sparta: brings out a dedicated base, but Plane shouldn't have moved up from late January as it has to contend for screen space with two other new releases and hasn't had time to build buzz. Legs will be fine on this one, but I'm not expecting a Den of Thieves-level hit. 8/10/24 (3x from 3 day/2.4x from 4 day)

 

House Party: I saw an ad for this on TBS about an hour ago and forgot it was coming out. The film looks too generic for a breakout with how much the comedy genre has struggled recently. LeBron's presence won't be enough to draw audiences to a theater for this. 5/6/12 (2.4x from 3 day/2x from 4 day)

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I'm going to go as far as to say that nothing in 2023 has much going for them. The Marvel movies and Fast X are going to be destroyed by franchise fatigue, the summer movies are all going to eat each other alive, the DC movies are all storytelling dead ends and there aren't many surefire crowdpleasers in the last quarter. Dune 2's growth will be more in line with Sonic 2 than The Dark Knight, and Aquaman 2 will be lucky to even be half as big as the first film. I'm going to be even more bold and say that I'm not expecting any billion dollar movies at all next year.

Edited by BadOlCatSylvester
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3 minutes ago, BadOlCatSylvester said:

I'm going to go as far as to say that nothing in 2023 has much going for them. The Marvel movies and Fast X are going to be destroyed by franchise fatigue, the summer movies are all going to eat each other alive, the DC movies are all storytelling dead ends and there aren't many surefire crowdpleasers in the last quarter. Dune 2's growth will be more in line with Sonic 2 than The Dark Knight, and Aquaman 2 will be lucky to even be half as big as the first film. I'm going to be even more bold and say that I'm not expecting any billion dollar movies at all next year.

👀

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If M3GAN is good (say, Smile or Split level quality) I could see it having a run pretty much on par with @Eric in Boots’s prediction. If it’s mediocre or bad, it’ll be closer to @WrathOfHan’s prediction. Honestly, with regards to this film, I feel like each of your predictions are the bookend grosses, and whoever ends up closer depends on quality.

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January 20

 

Missing: Searching hasn't stayed in the public conscious or found a larger audience since it came out four years ago, so why would a sequel releasing in a deflated market do anywhere close to the first? The only thing in Missing's favor is an empty marketplace for new releases, but Knock at the Cabin is probably vying for the same audience two weeks later. This mystery's gonna be a dead one. 3/9 (3x)

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9 hours ago, Eric in Boots said:

January 6

M3GAN: Right off the bat, we’re in for something special. The teaser trailer set social media ablaze and horror fans and Swifties alike have been pushing memes and TikTok dances like crazy. Quorum metrics are very strong, with 30M+ looking like a certainty. The big issue is still its release date, since everybody already spent money on Christmas movies by then, but this honestly has enough strength just on the memes that things will be just fine. This will be a great start for a year that might not be so strong all the way through. 35/100 (2.86x)

 

9 hours ago, WrathOfHan said:

January 6

 

M3GAN: Gonna be real, I think buzz peaked too early on this one. Having the premiere well in advance of the film's release without social reactions or reviews was a dumb move. Social marketing has to go back into overdrive this week to remind audiences it's out soon. That said, M3GAN will still open to strong numbers for an early January horror, just maybe not what some of us were hoping for. Legs will depend how well the film delivers on its campy marketing. 20/55 (2.75x)

I feel like this perfectly sums up the perils of predicting movies whose only buzz is based entirely on memes. :lol:

 

6 hours ago, SLAM! said:

@WrathOfHan @Eric in Boots

 

Don’t forget about The Devil Conspiracy, Samuel Goldwyn Pictures’s January 13th wide release about satanic biotechnicians trying to give Jesus’s DNA to the devil and the priest possessed by the archangel Michael trying to thwart their plan!

Real photo from the pitch meeting:

 

crazy plan Blank Template - Imgflip

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February 3

 

80 for Brady: I don’t even get who this is for. Not saying women don't like football, but a lot of NFL/Brady fans probably won’t watch a Book Club-style comedy and I don't think grandmas are desperate for a Jane Fonda football movie. And comedies are dead anyways and with bad Quorum results...yeah. 6/15 (2.5x)

 

Knock at the Cabin: Old just barely missed 50M during a time when audiences were still slow to return to theaters. And I think ultimately this will do about on par, maybe a little less than that. I just plain don’t feel like the “stopping the apocalypse” hook is as strong or as memorable as Old’s “beach turns you old” hook, and I’m not sure it will do much better critically to get non-Shyamalan fans on board. Quorum metrics are also pretty mediocre too. Still, these movies are cheap and have a solid enough fanbase that it will probably be another solid entry in the Shyamagod/Blumhouse relationship. 17/45 (2.65x)

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February 10

Magic Mike’s Last Dance: Yeah, this will do solid. Magic Mike’s still a recognizable name and property, and there’s enough of a gap between this and the first movie for some good ol' nostalgia to kick in. Plus Tatum had two legit hits last year, showing he’s still got some popularity, and the surround sound and striptease action will be a great spectacle. And we all know that spectacle wins above all else. Won't rock the boat, but a good, solid way to end the franchise and a nice piece of counterprogramming versus Ant-Man. 30/70 (2.33x)

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February 17

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania: This promises to be the real deal and a big MCU gamechanger with the introduction of the new Thanos of the MCU, Kang. But Quorum metrics are pretty mediocre, even after the trailer landed, and they have not picked up whatsoever. Not a good sign two months from release. Plus MCU fatigue is real, as everybody’s sick and tired of all these crappy shows, of which this is tying into. While Loki is one of the more popular ones, it still makes it hard for the people who didn’t see or care much for Loki to get all that enthused about this movie's repercussions or this Kang guy. It will still be comfortably ahead of Ant-Man and the Wasp, but I feel in a non-Disney+ world, this would have for sure done way more. And yeah, Marvel underperformances are going to be a big trend this year. 90/240 (2.67x)

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