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We boldly predict the top 10 movies to come out this year

Posted Sunday, February 8, 2009 at 7:22 PM Central

by John Couture

Each year, we like to look ahead at the year ahead and try and predict which movies are going to tip the box office scales and which movies will be sleeper hits.

Last year, we did a so-so job with our predictions. I don't think anyone would have predicted that The Dark Knight would have been as big as it was. And we totally blew it when it came to The Love Guru and its paltry $32 million.

But, it's a new year and a new opportunity to get these numbers as perfect as we possibly can. We've taken your feedback and created a list that we think will be top notch. Of course, there are factors beyond our control such as a studio deciding to move a big movie to the following year.

Without further ado, we provide our list of top movies of 2009.

  1. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - This is the movie that got bumped back six months because of the success of The Dark Knight. The Harry Potter movies are the very definition of consistency with its last three predecessors in the $290 million range. I think the wait will actually help it. Mark it down for $350 million.
  2. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen - Sequels released in the Summer almost always do better than their previons entries. Transformers did $319 million. This one will do a bit better. Estimate: $337 million.
  3. Monsters vs. Aliens - Animated movies always unexpectedly (at least for me) show up on the top 10 list at the end of the year. A gross of $275 million seems likely for this one.
  4. X-Men Origins: Wolverine - This one might be a stretch, but the last X-Men movie did $234 million. It's been a long time and this movie looks pretty impressive. Even more so with the lack of competition. Expect around $256 million.
  5. Up - I'm hedging my bet with the animated movie above. These two could flip-flop. Either way, they should both be over #200 million. A tally in the $224 million range is not out of the question.
  6. Terminator: Salvation - This movie is probably the one with the biggest risk associated with it. I could see it up here, and I can see it flopping big time. Call me an optimist. The Terminator will be back for $200 million.
  7. Star Trek - Yeah, we predicted a seventh place finish last year. It's not our fault that J.J. Abrams pushed it back a year. In fact, we think the extra time will help its draw. It'll boldly go to $190 million.
  8. New Moon - Twilight went out fast and fizzled quickly. We actually think that this one will do very similar business, albeit down a bit. $172 million is a good bet.
  9. G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra - This one is another one that could go either way. I could totally see it struggling to break $100 million. You seem to think otherwise. So this is a compromise, we'll see who is right. Our collective estimate is $150 million.
  10. Public Enemies - This one is my wild card. I went off the board with this one because time and again there's always a movie that comes out of nowhere to land in the top 10. This one is it. Trust me to the tune of $139 million.

So, how did we do? I'm sure that you'll sound off on this topic and we'll be able to judge how we did with the numbers come 11 months or so.