Maze Runner will try to outpace “Whitey” Bulger biopic Black Mass

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In this image released by 20th Century Fox, Dylan O’Brien appears in a scene from the film, "Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials." (Richard Foreman, Jr./20th Century Fox via AP)

CHICOPEE Mass. (WWLP) – Last weekend was an unusually strong weekend for the month of September with two movies opening with more than $25 million. Another strong weekend looks likely as we have two movies once again vying for $25 million or higher.

The Maze Runner opened in September 2014 with $32.5 million on its way to over $100 million at the box-office. Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials opened to an almost identical opening day as The Maze Runner did on its first day with an estimated $11 million. This is actually a slightly disappointing first day for Scorch.

Being a sequel, Scorch is likely to be much more frontloaded than its predecessor was leading to a weekend total of roughly $29 million. With reviews not being as kind to the sequel and a smaller opening, it is likely going to finish roughly $20 million below the original movie did by the end of its run. It is hard to tell if this result will deter Fox from continuing with more sequels or not. With international markets growing, more studios have overlooked disappointing domestic results when creating sequels.

Biopic Black Mass opened with an estimated $8.8 million on Friday. Since it is not a sequel and is geared towards adult audiences, Black Mass should hold better over the three day weekend than Scorch will. With a $3 million lead however, Scorch should maintain first for the weekend (although Black Mass should make it a closer race than many predicted).

In this image released by Warner Bros. Entertainment, Joel Edgerton portrays John Connolly, left, and Johnny Depp portrays Whitey Bulger in the Boston-set film, "Black Mass." (Claire Folger/Warner Bros. Entertainment via AP)
In this image released by Warner Bros. Entertainment, Joel Edgerton portrays John Connolly, left, and Johnny Depp portrays Whitey Bulger in the Boston-set film, “Black Mass.” (Claire Folger/Warner Bros. Entertainment via AP)

Black Mass is a bit of a return to form for star Johnny Depp. After seeing his box-office drawing ability peak with the Pirates of the Caribbean and Charlie and the Chocolate factory, his star power had become a little dimmer. He did have a huge hit with Alice in Wonderland back in 2010, but has had more failures than success recently with movies like Transcendence and Mortedecai.

Black Mass should be a return to both his critical and box office success days. With an opening around $25 million this weekend and long legs for awards season, it is possible that Black Mass could make as much as $100 million by the end of its run.

Opening in limited release in a special IMAX run before its regular theatrical run is Everest. Despite only being in 545 theaters, Everest managed to place fifth on Friday and should stay in fifth by the end of the weekend. It should be able to make $6 or $7 million for the weekend ahead of its initial run.

Last weekend’s new movies took a bit of a tumble Friday but should both finish the weekend with about $10 million. The Visit and The Perfect Guy will flip flop their positions on the chart as Visit placed a better hold on Friday than Guy.

Speaking of good holds, War Room will once again have the best hold in the top ten this weekend. War Room expanded into roughly 300 more theaters and posted only a 15% drop from last Friday with an estimated $1.8 million. War Room is tracking almost identical to God’s Not Dead through the same point in its run.

This photo provided by courtesy of AFFIRM Films/Provident Films shows, Alex, left, and Stephen Kendrick, co-founders of Kendrick Brothers. “There is a huge contingency of the American population who do not go to movies. They have been burned too many times,” said “War Room” producer and co-writer Stephen Kendrick. “Christians love good movies, but too often their faith is ridiculed or mocked... Alex and I are trying to make the kind of movies that we want to go see.” (David Whitlow/AFFIRM Films/Provident Films via AP)
This photo provided by courtesy of AFFIRM Films/Provident Films shows, Alex, left, and Stephen Kendrick, co-founders of Kendrick Brothers. “There is a huge contingency of the American population who do not go to movies. They have been burned too many times,” said “War Room” producer and co-writer Stephen Kendrick. “Christians love good movies, but too often their faith is ridiculed or mocked… Alex and I are trying to make the kind of movies that we want to go see.” (David Whitlow/AFFIRM Films/Provident Films via AP)

With the Pope visiting America this weekend, Hollywood decided to release another faith based movie this weekend. Unfortunately more individuals were interested in seeing the Pope than in seeing new release Captive. Captive debuted in 8th place Friday with an estimated $650K. Hollywood continues to be baffled by faith based movies and the audience that watches them. Hollywood realizes that there is a large audience for faith based movies, but have failed to come up with a winning formula like it has for other genres.

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