The weekend on the horizon is one of the most important of the year for Hollywood. Date traffic created by the Valentine’s Day holiday is expected to generate massive numbers across the board for this weekend’s new releases. However, a storm has blanketed the Northeastern US with over a foot of snow, and that may have some impact the revenue performance of all movies in theaters for the next few days.
Undeterred by these variables, researchers at Unanimous AI convened a swarm of 30 movie fans to judge the earning potential of three films hitting wide release today. In every case, researchers had the swarm watch and react to trailers for the movies. Based on those feelings and their own knowledge, the swarm then predicted weekend box office earnings potential for these films.
As for the movies the Swarm A.I. had under consideration, this weekend is all about the sequel. THE LEGO BATMAN movie (featuring the vocal talents of Will Arnett, Zach Galifianakis and Michael Cera among others) headed that list, the second feature film to draw on the popular kids’ blocks for inspiration. The swarm also considered the fate of the steamy FIFTY SHADES DARKER, the second film based on the fiction universe of writer E. L. James. Finally, the swarm took on Keanu Reeves reprising the title role of the assassin in the action series franchise JOHN WICK CHAPTER 2.
As the click-able chart above shows, the Swarm A.I. had varied reactions to the trailers to these three movies. Those impressions fueled how they saw the box office race this weekend shaking out. LEGO BATMAN looks like the runaway winner this weekend, set to top the $70 million dollar opening of THE LEGO MOVIE three years ago. The Swarm A.I. believes that this is a movie that will have families filling theaters all weekend long. Interestingly, the studio claims it will be happy if this family-friendly film matches the opening totals of its predecessor, but experts have the film tapped for bigger things. UNU agrees with an industry forecast more in the $80 million range.
The Swarm A.I. was less enthused by the FIFTY SHADES DARKER trailer. Although intended to beckon couples with a sexy come hither tease, our swarm was rather unimpressed. That caused them to slightly downgrade some of the heavy box office predictions for the film this weekend, predicting a total somewhere in the mid-$30 million range. Although our swarm thought that date night couples would turn out for the film this weekend despite negative reviews, this prediction seems to forecast a fairly rapid tumble down the box office charts for the movie in the weeks ahead.
The final movie the swarm considered was the sequel to the surprise action hit, JOHN WICK. If you thought you’d seen all the Keanu Reeves action movies you ever needed to already, UNU joined a chorus of critics in contradicting that notion. The trailer for JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 2 won over the Swarm A.I. in a major way, and caused them to go big on their prediction for the film. If UNU is right, look for this action thriller to more than double the $14 million opening weekend of its predecessor by Monday.
That wraps up this week’s movie predictions for UNU. We’ve always got more forecasts coming, though, thanks to awards season, soccer, and other sports as well. If you’d like to get a weekly email with our swarm results and performance recaps, just drop us a line below!