The box office certainly isn't the place that it used to be, but as the movie industry continues to shift back to something approaching normal, it is becoming a concern once again. Movie theaters are open across the country and while capacity and other restrictions are still in place in many regions, going to the theater is at least an option. So how many people will go see Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson in The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard when it opens in theaters? Perhaps not a great deal, as the movie is looking to only do about $16 million in its first five days of release.
The Hitman's Bodyguard was something of a surprise hit when it was released back in 2017. It made $176 million worldwide on a modest budget, and saw an opening weekend over $20 million domestically. By comparison, The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard is only projected to do $14-$16 million over its first five days of release, according to The Wrap. The movie opened this past Wednesday rather than the traditional Friday release, though we can expect the majority of its income to happen Friday-Sunday.
Even with the small opening, the comedy sequel still has a pretty modest budget all things considered, so it's possible the movie will still end up a "success," especially after international territories are taken into account, but it will be an uphill climb.
There are a couple of obvious reasons that The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard might not be a smash hit. The first is that a lot of people still aren't quite ready to go to movie theaters. The other reason is that, critical response to The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard is not very good. While the original film didn't exactly get rave reviews, the sequel is getting hit even harder with harsh criticism.
Bad reviews certainly aren't the end of the world for most films. There have been plenty of massive blockbusters that have made billions at the box office despite critics hating them. However, when the bad reviews are combined with potential apprehension, the review may actually mean a lot more. Maybe you'd be willing to go back to the theater for a really good movie, but for one you might not love, is it worth it?
At the same time, anything is possible. We could find that what people need more than anything right now is a chance to laugh and so seeing Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson could be just what moviegoers are looking for. The film could greatly exceed expectations. If people decide this is the weekend to go back to the movies, this is likely what many will see.
Of course, people might have already decided exactly when they're going to go back to the movies and they may be waiting another week, until F9 arrives.