‘Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug’ Aims for $80M Box Office Debut, But It Won’t Be Easy

Don’t be fooled if “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” falls a bit shy of its predecessor, “An Unexpected Journey,” in its opening box-office weekend both domestically and abroad — this dragon will hunt.

“The Desolation of Smaug” rolls out Friday in 3,903 U.S. theaters, and is expected to breathe between $75 million and $80 million in box-office fire, just short of Peter Jackson’s first trilogy installment, which opened the same weekend last year to $85 million. The sequel is also unlikely to match “Journey’s” $138 million opening-weekend haul overseas.

But there’s no reason to think “Smaug” can’t match “Journey’s” more than $1 billion worldwide in the end — it’s just getting off to a slightly slower start.  Read More...



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