Building steady buzz over the past several weeks, Universal's raunchy comedy "Neighbors" prepares to move in near the top of the domestic box office, rivaling "The Amazing Spider-Man 2," with a potential mid-to-high $30 million three-day bow, according to industry observers.
The $18 million R-rated laffer, starring Seth Rogen and Zac Efron, came on strong with tracking last month; pic's advanced ticket sales on Fandango also nearly double last year's "This Is the End," which opened to $20 million. Audience awareness for "Neighbors" could help it overperform just like "Ted," which wound up crushing its mid-to-high $30 million expectations with an eventual $54 million domestic opening last year.
Meanwhile, Sony's "Spider-Man" tentpole kicked off summer B.O. with close to $92 million, which should segue into a low-$40 million gross this weekend if the film drops between 50%-55% through Sunday. Last year, "Iron Man 3" fell 58% in its second weekend, while "Thor" dropped 47%.
The Spidey sequel soared opening weekend, but the pic's gross likely was deflated somewhat by the prominance of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" in the market.
Playability for "Spider-Man" has been strong during mid-weeks, however.
While "Spider-Man" should keep its stronghold with teens and some families, "Neighbors" is tracking best among women who could boost the pic's prospects by organizing a "girls'-night-out." Efron, who is shirtless throughout much of the movie, created a recent Internet sensation when he took off his shirt on-stage at the MTV Movie Awards.
As counter-programming to the outrageous frat pic, Sony-TriStar's faith-based family comedy "Mom's Night Out" bows at more than 1,000 locations, playing to the Mother's Day moviegoing crowd. Pic is the third-biggest advanced ticket seller for Fandango so far this weekend.
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