A handful of new films will try to stop the Twilight juggernaut during the Thanksgiving holiday.

Thanksgiving Rush

on November 25, 2008 by Phil Contrino
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Once they've had their turkey-induced naps, moviegoers won't find any shortage of choices at the local cinema this Thanksgiving.

In addition to strong holdovers such as Twilight, Bolt and Quantum of Solace, audiences will have to choose from Australia, Four Christmases, Transporter 3 and Milk, which are all opening on Wednesday.

Still, as strong as those new films may be, Twilight has a very solid chance of staying in first place during its second frame.

MovieTickets.com sold more tickets for Twilight on Monday than Australia, Four Christmases and Transporter 3 combined. As of Tuesday at 11:45 p.m. EST, Australia and Four Christmases remain very close and both films are outpacing Transporter 3 by about 5 to 1 on the popular ticketing site.

"I'd expect Twilight to do well during its second weekend. We are still experiencing strong online ticket sales, which can certainly be credited to repeat buyers and in large part to the tremendous visibility of the film's online marketing efforts," Joel Cohen, Executive Vice President & General Manager for MovieTickets.com. told B OXOFFICE.

Considering that it grossed nearly $70 million last weekend, Twilight could bring in as much as $35 million during its second frame and it should easily pass the $100 million mark this coming weekend.

As for Australia, it may not be the first choice for audiences looking to find some holiday escapism and its bloated running time will only hurt it. That's not what 20th Century Fox wants to hear considering that in addition to boasting an epic story, the film cost a reported $130 million to make. Australia should be able to muster an opening weekend of around $20 million and a couple million more from Wednesday and Thursday's grosses. From then on, it will need strong buzz and awards recognition to even come close to recouping its gigantic budget.

Four Christmases should end up finishing behind Twilight even though audiences may feel a little too much déjà vu when it comes to the Vince Vaughn/Reese Witherspoon comedy. After all, Vaughn recently appeared in another holiday-themed film, 2007's Fred Claus. Claus just came out on DVD this Tuesday and it grossed $72 million domestically during its theatrical run. Expect Four Christmases to finish with around $23 million during its opening weekend.

Transporter 3
will have to rely on Jason Statham fans for most of its box office haul. Statham's last film, Death Race, opened with $12.6 million and Transporter 3 should fare slightly better thanks to its built-in audience. Despite stiff competition, the action flick should be able to bring in around $14 million in its opening frame.

As for Milk, Focus is opening it on 34 screens this Wednesday and it could easily average as much as $30,000 per print thanks to the drawing power of Sean Penn.

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