Fate of the Furious to speed into top spot

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The Fate of the Furious is in pole position.

Universal is releasing the eighth installment in its high-octane, auto-centric action series as the widest North American, non-summer release in its history, pushing the ensemble blockbuster to a staggering 4,311 theaters this Friday. With no other new wide releases revving their engines this weekend, the film will handily cross the finish line in first place, but how much of an impact will it have on solid holdovers like The Boss Baby and Beauty and the Beast?

Check out EW’s April 14-16 box office estimates below.

1. The Fate of the Furious – $120 million+

There’s no question F. Gary Gray’s take on the beloved Vin Diesel-fronted franchise — which launched 16 years ago — will burn rubber at the top of the domestic chart in the days ahead. Just how high will it go, though? Since 2001, with the exception of Tokyo Drift, each of the Fast and the Furious films have stacked opening grosses higher than their respective predecessors, ballooning to the most recent installment’s $147.2 million debut in 2015.

While F8 is tracking below that number, it’s still pacing to bag over $110 million. Most of its business will pour in from international markets, as Furious 7 netted almost $1.2 billion from foreign territories, making it the sixth highest-grossing film (unadjusted for inflation) in history. Day-and-date with its U.S. premiere, F8 drives into 63 territories at over 20,000 locations in China, the U.K., Mexico, Brazil, Australia, Russia, and more, priming it for one of the year’s top global openings thus far.

2. The Boss Baby – $14.5 million

The reigning box office champion (that no one saw coming, mind you) heads into its third go-round on Friday, holding on a little stronger than usual as an effective, family-friendly counter to F8. Look for The Boss Baby to be demoted to $13 million-$15 million through Sunday.

3. Beauty and the Beast – $12.5 million 

Disney’s live-action adaptation of the beloved animated classic will finally cross the $1 billion mark by the end of this week, as its current global total stands at $986.4 million after just 26 days in theaters. The Bill Condon-directed fantasy stars Emma Watson and Dan Stevens as the titular couple nearly 16 years after the original became the first animated film to nab a Best Picture nod from the Academy. While such lofty awards season prospects might be a bit out of the retelling’s reach, the film is a legitimate hit with audiences and will finish its theatrical tenure as one of the studio’s best performers of all time. After a red-hot run, expect Beauty and the Beast to hold steady in the top three this week, cooling off in the $11 million-$14 million range.

4. Going in Style – $7.5 million 

Mature audiences turned out last week for Zach Braff’s latest directorial effort, about three older men (Oscar-winners Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, and Alan Arkin) plotting revenge-fueled bank heists, and they’ll probably do it again over the impending three-day frame — if historical trends repeat themselves. The older crowd tends to spread itself out over several weeks versus flooding theaters over opening weekend, typically resulting in the low launches posted by the likes of Hope Springs ($14.7 million opening, $63.5 million overall in 2012) and Florence Foster Jenkins ($6.6 million opening, $27.4 million overall in 2016). Look for Going in Style to take a soft tumble over its sophomore run.

5. Smurfs: The Lost Village – $7.4 million

Following its middling first weekend gross last week, the third in Sony / Columbia’s reimagined line of Smurfs movies should shed around half of its inaugural audience, likely sputtering out in the coming weeks as a lower-priority holdover in the wake of buzzier family films (The Boss Baby, Beauty and the Beast).

Outside the top five, Chris Evans’ family drama Gifted — about a protective uncle who tries to forge a normal life for his niece, a child math prodigy — expands this week, seemingly getting a head start on Fate of the Furious as it hits theaters nationwide Wednesday. Fox Searchlight did not respond to EW’s request for an exact theater count, but it is expected to play at roughly 1,000 sites, according to Box Office Mojo. Having averaged a respectable $7,971 in limited release last weekend, expect Gifted to pull in around $3 million-$5 million in the coming days.

Hilary Swank, Susan Sarandon, Jessica Biel, and Patrick Stewart head to the box office this weekend as well, having lent their voices to the animated comedy Spark, which is poised for a modest tally at approximately 350 theaters.

On the specialty scene, James Gray’s The Lost City of Z bows at four theaters, hoping to attract the prestige crowd that has catapulted Gray’s previous offerings to solid limited openings (The Immigrant earned $14,688 per screen in 2014, while Two Lovers averaged $13,569 in 2009) in the past. The 2016 New York Film Festival closer stars Charlie Hunnam as British Lieutenant Colonel Percy Fawcett, an explorer who went missing in 1925 while searching for a lost city in the Amazon.



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