For the first (but definitely not last) time in 2020, Disney is set to dominate the weekend box office, thanks to the release of Pixar's new animated adventure, Onward. Director Dan Scanlon's new movie is opening in 4,200 theaters around North America Thursday night and it's expected to easily out-perform all of its competition. Onward is currently expected to rake in anywhere from $40 million to $45 million over the course of the three-day weekend.
None of Onward's major competitors really stand a chance against it this weekend. Invisible Man will likely perform well in its second outing, but is sure to drop from its $29 million debut. The Way Back, Ben Affleck's brooding basketball drama, is looking an opening weekend below $10 million. Sonic the Hedghog, which is probably Onward's biggest competition in terms of its audience, has been in theaters for almost a month.
Onward should have no issue shrugging off the other films and winning the box office this weekend, which is something that Pixar is used to at this point. However, when compared to Pixar's other movies, Onward's box office performance will leave a lot to be desired.
If Onward opens at exactly $45 million, it will be 18th amongst all of Pixar's opening weekends, just behind Ratatouille's $47 million and slightly ahead of The Good Dinosaur's $39 million. That's a far cry from record breakers like Incredibles 2 ($182M), Finding Dory, ($135M), and Toy Story 4 ($118M), but those sort of numbers were never expected from Onward.
The other major box office hurdle facing the release of Onward is the closure of the Chinese box office. China remains the second-biggest theatrical market in the world, but the actual theaters throughout the country have been closed since January due to the outbreak of the coronavirus. Onward will have to be released without the help of Chinese theaters, though it could get a delayed release once things are operational once again.
Are you going to be checking out Onward this weekend? How much do you think it'll make when all is said and done? Let us know in the comments!
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