Weekly Anticipation Index: 'Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs' and 'Public Enemies'

Featured Stories - on May 09, 2009 by Phil Contrino

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs and Public Enemies will try to kick off July with a bang.


The month of July will begin with two radically different potential blockbusters. 20th Century Fox will continue its lucrative Ice Age franchise, while Universal will deliver Public Enemies, a dark cops and robbers drama from acclaimed director Michael Mann.

Both films will be released on Wednesday, July 1 which will give them an early jump on the weekend. However, their respective weekend hauls will be hurt by the fact that the 4th of July falls on a Saturday this year.

While Fox's animation division still has yet to achieve the same level of success that Disney/Pixar and DreamWorks Animation have, the Ice Age franchise has proven to be a very reliable one. The first film in the series was able to open with $46.3 million domestically ($57.3 million when adjusted for inflation) back in 2002 before grossing an impressive $176.4 million ($218.4 million adjusted) by the end of its run. Meanwhile, 2005's Ice Age: The Meltdown opened with $68 million domestically ($74.5 million adjusted) on its way to $195.3 million domestically ($214.1 million adjusted). Dawn of the Dinosaurs will be shown in 3D, which means that its box office haul will benefit from pricier tickets. Plus, by the time Dawn of the Dinosaurs rolls out, family audiences will be ready for a new animated flick as UP, which opens on May 29, begins to slowly taper off.

Coming off the commercial and critical disaster that was 2006's Miami Vice, Mann is desperately in need of a hit. The fact that Johnny Depp and Christian Bale headline the cast of Enemies means that the director is almost guaranteed to land just that. Both actors are at the height of their box office power thanks to their involvement in such blockbuster films as the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise and Christopher Nolan's two Batman films. Since it's a period piece, Enemies will appeal more to older audiences and that means its domestic gross may be spread out a little bit more rather than being dominated by the opening frame. Teenage crowds may be enticed by the presence of Depp and Bale, but they will likely be turned off by Mann's contemplative, deliberately-paced approach to filmmaking.

Check out our early predictions for both films below.

Weekly Anticipation Index, May 9, 2009
Title Release Date Distributor Opening Weekend Cumulative
Angels & Demons May 15 Sony $68M $170M
Terminator Salvation May 21 Warner Bros. $60M $185M
Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian May 22 Fox $53M $195M
Dance Flick May 22 Paramount $18M $52M
UP May 29 Disney/Pixar $52M $175M
Drag Me to Hell May 29 Universal $18M $42M
Land of the Lost June 5 Universal $35M $100M
The Hangover June 5 Warner Bros. $27M $105M
Imagine That June 12 Paramount $20M $62M
The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 June 12 Sony $27M $85M
The Proposal June 19 Disney $24M $90M
Year One June 19 Sony/ Columbia $31M $82M
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen June 24 DreamWorks/ Paramount $95M $350M
My Sister's Keeper June 26 Warner Bros./ New Line $14M $45M
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs July 1 Fox $60M $220M
Public Enemies July 1 Warner Bros./ New Line $35M $130M

Additional reporting by Daniel Garris.

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