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Weekend Box Office: Everthing Old Is New Again

April 6, 2012

This Easter weekend at the movies: It’s time for nostalgia with the return of the Original Cast from the first 3 American Pie films as they get back together for an American Reunion (reviews); It’s also time for the return of the award winning blockbuster 1997 film Titanic (reviews) in 3-D. Both of which going up against powerhouse The Hunger Games (reviews)

Pamela McClintock of THR:

A trio of high-profile titles will battle it out at the Easter weekend box office — Universal’s R-rated comedy American Reunion, James Cameron’s Titanic 3D rerelease and The Hunger Games.

The holiday could see a close contest between the three, although Hunger Games is given a slight edge. American Reunion and Titanic are expected to gross in the $22 million to $25 million range, while Hunger Games is pegged to do $25 million or more.

American Reunion, opening Friday and the fourth outing in Universal’s raunchy comedy franchise, opens nine years after threequel American Wedding debuted to $33 million in August 2003. Reuniting the stars from American Pie (1999), Reunion’s cast is led by Jason Biggs, Seann William Scott and Eugene Levy.

Conscious of the long hiatus, Universal kept the budget of Reunion to $50 million, with Relativity co-financing. Reunion also opens in 26 foreign markets this weekend, including Russia and Mexico (Titanic 3D should pose tough competition).

Combined, the first three titles in the American Pie series grossed more than $650 million at the worldwide box office and $1.1 billion including ancillary revenues.

From Paramount and 20th Century Fox, Titanic 3D opened Wednesday — the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the real-life Titanic — and grossed a strong $4.7 million (including Tuesday evening previews). The release also is opening in 84 foreign territories.

Lionsgate’s Hunger Games remains a box office Goliath, and has now earned north of $262 million domestically. It should cross $300 million by early next weekend, and possibly by the end of the weekend if business is particularly strong.

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