In spite of varying predictions, there is no drop of a doubt that Disney-Pixar’s “Finding Dory” will make a massive splash as it opens in 4,305 theaters this weekend, which is Pixar’s widest opening ever.
Box office trackers have the sequel bowing at $120 million, on average, though Disney estimates are a more conservative $100 million.
“When tracking starts getting into this ‘super range,’ it’s impossible to be too precise,” one insider told TheWrap.
As “Finding Dory” looks to dominate, some counter programing comes in form of the action comedy “Central Intelligence,” starring Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart — who both notably have huge social media followings.
In spite of the daunting “Dory” competition, the New Line film should make at least $35 million as it opens this weekend in 3,560 locations, according to prognosticators. Warner Bros. is distributing the film domestically and Universal is putting it out overseas — and both studios are betting on clearing at least $30 million.
“Central Intelligence,” about a CIA agent (Johnson) who gets a mild mannered accountant (Hart) embroiled in his dangerous world of espionage, marks the first time the two stars have appeared in a film together. It was made on a production budget of approximately $50 million.
Back on the “Dory” front, more than 3,200 screens will be playing the film in 3D, and more than 200 will be IMAX screens. Premium Large Format screens account for 450 of the tally, and four will play in the Dolby Cinema format.
The film should also get an added lift from 86 percent of schools that are out this Friday — and that jumps to 100 percent the following week.
Again featuring the voices of Ellen DeGeneres as the series’ forgetful blue tang fish, and Albert Brooks as Marlin the clownfish, new voice cast includes Diane Keaton, Idris Elba, Kate McKinnon and — quite memorably — Sigourney Weaver.
This time it’s Dory’s turn to go searching for her family, with Nemo and Marlin helping out.
Pixar generally doesn’t disclose production budgets — and “Dory” is no exception this time around.