2010 has been an unpredictable year at the box office. But this weekend is all but a sure thing.
Avatar kept chugging strong for almost three months. Alice in Wonderland exceeded anyone’s expecations. Iron Man 2 did good, but not great, and Robin Hood was a bust.
But the one sure bet of the year has apparently always been Shrek Forever After – the promised fourth and final chapter of the Shrek universe, which goes up against Saturday Night Live’s R-rated MacGruber. “They’ve planned this incredibly well, it’s been about eight weeks since an animated family film, since How to Train Your Drago, so Shrek is right there to pick up these audiences who have been starved for two months,” says Jeff Bock, box office analyst with Exhibitor Relations. “It will do $100 million, no doubt about it. It’s got a prime release date, relatively little competition, and it’s the largest animated franchise in the history of filmdom, so don’t bet against this one.”
It’s also in 3D, which guarantees a significant number of tickets sold at premium 3D prices – and a renewed debate as to whether 3D is needed, and how it can be used.