Last weekend was supposed to knock Suicide Squad from atop the box office, with three new releases hitting theaters after this superhero blockbuster suffered a massive 67.4% drop during its second week of release. Thanks to all three of those new releases (Ben-Hur, War Dogs and Kubo & the Two Strings) underperforming, Suicide Squad three-peated to become the #1 movie yet again. Now it looks to close out the month of August with a clean sweep. Standing in its way are three newcomers, Sony's horror-thriller Don't Breathe, The Weinstein Company's boxing biopic Hands of Stone and Lionsgate's action sequel Mechanic: Resurrection. If our predictions ring true though, we believe Don't Breathe does have a chance to win the last weekend of the summer.
It has certainly been an unusual summer box office, which closes out on a rather weird note. All three of these new releases are rated R. R-rated movies are certainly back en vogue after the success of Deadpool, but none of these movies will likely put up huge numbers. The last weekend in August and the following Labor Day holiday are traditionally two of the lowest-grossing weekends of the entire year. In this same slot last year, Straight Outta Compton, in its third week in release, remained atop the box office with just $13.1 million. We're predicting that Don't Breathe will come out on top come Monday, with $15.6 million, followed by Mechanic: Resurrection in second place with $12.1 million, Suicide Squad in third with $10.2 million, Hands of Stone in fourth with $9.4 million and Sausage Party rounding out the top 5 with $8.2 million.
Box Office Mojo reports that Don't Breathe, the terrifying thriller from Evil Dead remake director Fede Alvarez, will be released in approximately 2,900 theaters, while Mechanic: Resurrection will debut in roughly 2,200 theaters and Hands of Stone will arrive in roughly 2,000 theaters. Aside from this large theater count advantage, Don't Breathe is also a hit with the critics, with an 88% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. There is no score for Mechanic: Resurrection quite yet, but critics are split down the middle on Hands Of Stone, which has a 50% rating on RT.
Don't Breathe follows a trio of friends who break into the house of a wealthy blind man, thinking they'll get away with the perfect heist. They're wrong. The film stars Stephen Lang (Avatar), Jane Levy (Suburgatory), Dylan Minnette (Goosebumps) and Daniel Zovatto (It Follows). Don't Breathe is directed by Fede Alvarez (Evil Dead) from a screenplay by Alvarez and Rodo Sayagues, with Sam Raimi, Rob Tapert and Fede Alvarez producing.
Mechanic: Resurrection brings back Jason Statham as Arthur Bishop from 2011's The Mechanic. When the deceitful actions of a cunning but beautiful woman Jessica Alba force him to return to the life he left behind, Bishop's life is once again in danger as he has to complete an impossible list of assassinations of the most dangerous men in the world. The supporting cast includes Tommy Lee Jones, Michelle Yeoh, Sam Hazeldine, Geoffrey Guiliano, Bonnie Z. Hutchinson, Sam Thomas Stevens and Dylan Farrell.
Hands of Stone follows the life of Roberto Duran (Edgar Ramirez), the Panamanian fighter who made his professional debut in 1968 as a 16 year-old and retired in 2002 at the age of 50. In June 1980, he defeated Sugar Ray Leonard (Usher Raymond) to capture the WBC welterweight title, but shocked the boxing world by returning to his corner in their November rematch, famously saying the words "no mas" (no more). Robert De Niro also stars as Duran's trainer, Ray Arcel, with a supporting cast that includes Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Ellen Barkin, John Turturro, Reg. E. Cathey, Oscar Jaenada and Ana de Armas.
The top 10 will be rounded out by War Dogs ($7 million), Kubo and the Two Strings ($6.4 million), Ben-Hur ($5.6 million), Pete's Dragon $5.1 million) and Bad Moms $4.2 million. Also opening in limited release is Roadside Attractions' Southside With You, Seven Clubs' thriller Black Songbird, IFC's dramatic thriller Complete Unknown, Independent's horror film Daylight's End, Sony Pictures Classics' comedy The Hollars, Magnolia's action-comedy In Order of Disappearance, FilmBuff's Level Up and Five & Two Pictures' drama Remember the Gold. We're not sure if any of these limited-release movies will expand in the weeks ahead, so stay tuned.
Looking ahead to next weekend, two more movies will open over the Labor Day holiday weekend, Disney's drama The Light Between the Oceans, starring Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander, and 20th Century Fox's Morgan starring Kate Mara, Rose Leslie and Paul Giamatti. Also opening in limited release is Invincible Pictures' Yoga Hosers, Paladin's Max Rose, FilmRise's White Girl and Lionsgate's No Manches Frida. Be sure to check back on Sunday for the box office estimates and again on Tuesday for the next wave of predictions. Until then, check out our box office predictions for the weekend of August 26.