Box Office Pick’em: April Draft

March wasn’t pretty (for Luke). In April’s round of Box Office Pick’em, Aaron gets to draft first… again.

Pick #1: Aaron

Selection: ‘Oblivion’

Reasoning: I understand that this is a risk. ‘Oblivion’ is hardly a proven franchise, which could turn out bad if people don’t end up seeing it. I’m hoping that its blockbuster look coupled with the presence of Tom Cruise will push it into the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Estimated Budget: $120 million

Pick #2: Luke

Selection: ‘Pain & Gain’

Reasoning: I’m not particularly a fan of Michael Bay, but with a smaller budget and two relevant actors, I’m going for it. I’m not falling for ’42’ (which I think looks horrible). Both The Rock and Wahlberg are coming off winning streaks, so let’s see what they can do as criminal bodybuilders in this comedic caper flick.

Estimated Budget: $25 million

Pick #3: Aaron

Selection: ‘Evil Dead’

Reasoning: Low budget + Cult following + Horror = Big box office receipts. All the press that ‘Evil Dead’ has gotten, plus the fact that the franchise has a huge following of loyal fans, makes this a great pick, I think. Most of the time, these type of movies easily make back their budgets, plus a little extra.

Estimated Budget: $14 million

Pick #4: Luke

Selection: ’42’

Reasoning: No, I have no faith in this movie, but I think it has more of a chance than ‘The Big Wedding’ or ‘Scary Movie 5′. For me, ’42’ has nothing going for it. It features a no-name cast, other than Harrison Ford, but he hasn’t put a damn thing into a role since the turn of the century, so he doesn’t count. The only real draw for ’42’ is the true story that it’s based on, but baseball is relatively dead these days, so I don’t see that having much pull either. Considering how overly-dramatized the film looks in its trailers, I’m not expecting a thing, but I hope that it will perform better than those other two releases!

Budget: TBD

Pick #5: Aaron

Selection: ‘The Big Wedding’

Reasoning: Yikes, the wide releases suddenly took a turn for the disastrous. ‘The Big Wedding’ looks awful, but so did the ‘Meet the Parents’ movies and they brought in millions of dollars. I’m hoping that the same crowd shows up for this.

Estimated Budget: TBD

Pick #6: Luke

Selection: ‘Scary Movie 5’

Reasoning: Good hell, these movies are horrible. There’s nothing worse than a spoof movie that can’t conjure a single laugh. Apparently, there are plenty of folks out there who either have no taste at all or deem this franchise a guilty pleasure. Let’s just hope that’s enough to push this beyond the $25 million threshold.

Estimated Budget: $20 million

Pick #7: Aaron

Selection: ‘Trance’

Reasoning: We’ve hit the limited releases now. I’m taking ‘Trance’ because it has name recognition and could easily go on to a wider, more successful release a few weeks down the road.

Estimated Budget: $16 million

Pick #8: Luke

Selection: ‘To the Wonder’

Reasoning: Terrence Malick has a devoted fan base. Although ‘To the Wonder’ didn’t receive the same glowing reviews at Cannes that ‘Tree of Life’ did, I don’t think that will deter a single Malick fan from seeing the film the moment that it opens at a local theater. I can also see ‘To the Wonder’ getting a little extra love due to it being the last film reviewed by the late Roger Ebert, who awarded it three-and-a-half stars out of four.

Estimated budget: TBD

Pick #9: Aaron

Selection: ‘Mud’

Reasoning: This movie has the cachet of big stars and it’s been traveling the festival circuit for quite a while now, building up a lot of positive buzz. I don’t think that mainstream moviegoing audiences will see it in droves, but I do think that fans of smaller films will eat it up. Also, I’ve seen it and can vouch for how good it is.

Estimated Budget: $10 million

Pick #10: Luke

Selection: ‘The Company You Keep’

Reasoning: I, too, am going for a movie with a little star power that hopped around the festival circuit. This activist-versus-journalist thriller actually sounds like a worthwhile film – but, then again, so did ‘Lions for Lambs’.

Estimated Budget: TBD

Pick #11: Aaron

Selection: ‘Disconnect’

Reasoning: I’m actually really excited to see this. I just have no idea when it’ll be available in my market. The trailers make it look extremely thrilling, dark and disturbing. Jason Bateman and Alexander Skarsgård are familiar names that should draw some attention to the movie.

Estimated Budget: TBD

Pick #12: Luke

Selection: ‘The Lords of Salem’

Reasoning: I despise the movies of Rob Zombie. They’re garbage. He has yet to make something worth watching. But with a tiny $1.5 million budget, I had to pick this one. Zombie’s devoted freaky fan base seems more like the crowd to download the movie illegally, but with “Quentin Tarantino Presents” listed on it, I’m hoping that ‘Lords of Salem’ can recoup its budget.

Estimated budget: $1.5 million

Pick #13: Aaron

Selection: ‘Upstream Color’

Reasoning: It won’t be in theaters for long. The Blu-ray comes out next month, but I think it might do respectably at art houses across the nation. This is a very different kind of release, though. Shane Carruth and the movie are touring around during its release. It should be interesting to see what box office returns it can do before home video.

Estimated Budget: TBD

Pick #14: Luke

Selection: ‘The Numbers Station’

Reasoning: I love John Cusack and don’t mind Malin Akerman, but am surprised to see ‘The Numbers Station’ getting a limited theatrical release. It appears to be more along the lines of their recent direct-to-home video releases. The only thing it’s got going for it is Akerman’s repeated promotion of it On Demand.

Budget: TBD

Luke’s Grand Net Total: $186,703,552

Aaron’s Grand Net Total: $885,907,648

Who do you think will win Box Office Pick'em in April?

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  1. I actually think Luke has a shot this month. I don’t see Oblivion doing great numbers (I could be wrong) and I think 42 will have some staying power with older moviegoers (my parents loved it).

  2. JM

    April is all about ‘Pain & Gain.’

    I’m expecting a big damn metacritic.

    ‘Bad Boys II’ made $300M (and still isn’t out on blu-ray 🙁

    If ‘Oblivion’ and ‘Pain & Gain’ gross the same, Luke has a $100M advantage via the smaller budget.

    Except that ‘Oblivion’ has a $60M head start in europe.


    If Aaron bribed Paramount to stagger the ‘Pain & Gain’ overseas rollout…

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