‘Avatar’ ready for sixth box office win

LOS ANGELES - “Avatar” will take a bit longer to fly past the domestic and worldwide box office records set by “Titanic,” but the sci-fi smash clearly is charting a similar course.

By (Reuters)

Published: Fri 22 Jan 2010, 9:31 AM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 3:20 AM

When “Avatar” again tops the weekend box office in North America — yes, when, not if, despite three wide releases hitting theaters Friday — James Cameron’s latest blockbuster will mark a sixth consecutive No. 1 frame.

Cameron’s “Titanic” was the last picture to do so, in 1998. In fact, the oceanliner-disaster film topped the domestic box office a record 15 consecutive weekends during the course of its 10-month theatrical run in 1997-98. Nobody expects “Avatar” to last quite that long, as releases are much more front-loaded these days, but there seems no immediate end in sight for its chart-topping prowess.

“Avatar” looks likely to ring up $25 million this session. That would give the box office magnet a domestic total of about $550 million and a worldwide tally approaching $1.8 billion as it closes in on the “Titanic” records of $600.8 million and $1.84 billion, respectively.

Among the new pictures, two appear strong, with prospective bows in the mid-teen millions. Fox opens the Dwayne Johnson family comedy “Tooth Fairy,” and Screen Gems sends out the sci-fi actioner “Legion,” starring Lucas Black (“Jarhead”) and Paul Bettany (“Creation”).

There hasn’t been a family comedy released of late, which gives “Tooth Fairy” a good shot at grabbing the boxoffice silver medal this weekend. “Legion” is tracking best among male youngsters.

A maiden theatrical voyage by newbie distributor CBS Films — the drama “Extraordinary Measures,” starring Harrison Ford and Brendan Fraser — should gross in the middle single-digit millions through Sunday.

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