Hollywood is once again overstuffing the Christmas stocking with films of all shapes and sizes, hoping to benefit from the most lucrative and intense stretch of the year at the box office.
Among the four new wide releases, Disney's 3D tentpole "Tron: Legacy" is expected to top the weekend with three-day sales north of $40 million.
Also battling for moviegoers are Warner Bros.' 3D family picture "Yogi Bear," Paramount/Relativity Media's "The Fighter," and Sony's romantic comedy "How Do You Know."
"Tron: Legacy" is tracking well among men of all ages. Disney introduced the $170 million follow-up to the 1982 cult classic to fanboys two years ago. Jeff Bridges returns in the role of Kevin Flynn, while Garrett Hedlund plays his son.
Yogi Bear brings an even more recognizable character to the big screen, at least among older moviegoers who grew up on the popular Hanna-Barbera cartoon. Warners will be happy if the film breaks $20 million this weekend.
Tracking for "How Do You Know" is on the softer side, indicating an opening of $12 million and possibly lower. The $100 million film stars Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson and Jack Nicholson.
The two wild cards are "The Fighter," which opened in limited release last weekend, and Fox Searchlight's "Black Swan," which makes a major play in expanding from 90 theaters to 959. On Wednesday, "Swan" ups its screen count to 1,426.
Both films are early awards favorites, as is the Weinstein Co.'s "The King's Speech," which expands to 43 locations from 19 Friday. All three picked up significant Golden Globe, Critics' Choice and SAG nominations this week.