“Free Guy,” the comedic action film starring Ryan Reynolds, is set to debut in the top spot at the domestic box office this weekend with $26 million.
The well-reviewed film took in around $10.5 million on Friday from 4,165 theaters, and is expected to add another $13 million to $16 million to its haul throughout the weekend. As COVID-19 concerns once again grow with the rise of the delta variant, the box office remains subdued as it’s possible that less people are choosing to go to the movies.
Distributed by 20th Century Studios, “Free Guy” is the first Disney movie to have a theatrical-only release for the first time in about a year. The film will run exclusively in theaters for 45 days, and its earnings will be an important indicator as to the state of the movie theater business.
In “Free Guy,” Reynolds portrays a non-playable video game character named Guy in a popular game called “Free City.” Once he realizes he is living in a fictional game, Guy sets off on a quest to become the game’s hero, with the help of the game’s programmers, played by Joe Keery and Jodie Comer. “Free Guy” also stars Lil Rel Howery, Taika Waititi and Utkarsh Ambudkar.
Horror sequel “Don’t Breathe 2” is projected to come in at No. 2 on the domestic box office charts, bowing to $4.365 million on Friday from 3,005 theaters. The film is estimated to end the weekend with a total of $10.35 million. Coming in at third is “Respect,” the Aretha Franklin biopic starring Jennifer Hudson. Directed by Liesl Tommy, the film opened to roughly $3.6 million from 3,207 theaters on Friday. It is expected to triple that amount by the end of the weekend for a cume of $9 million.
Rounding out the top five are Disney’s “Jungle Cruise” and Warner Bros.’ “The Suicide Squad.” “Jungle Cruise” is expected to add another $8.9 million to its haul, bringing it to a healthy $88 million. In its second weekend of release, “The Suicide Squad” has slipped to the No. 5 slot, and is aiming to add another $7.2 million to its earnings for a total of $42.3 million.