The three R-rated newcomers -- horror sequel Sinister 2, Fox's video game adaptation Hitman: Agent 47 and stoner action-comedy American Ultra -- are expected to open well below Compton as they try to take advantage of the traditionally quiet August window.
Sinister 2, a Blumhouse film made using the production company's microbudget model, is expected to pull in $14 million to $16 million in its debut. That will put it just below the opening of the original film, which starred Ethan Hawke and debuted to $18 million in October 2012. It went on to earn $77.7 million worldwide.
Gramercy Pictures, Focus Features’ genre label, will release the film in 2,758 theaters this weekend. Starring Shannyn Sossamon, James Ransone, and Robert and Dartanian Sloan, the sequel centers on a mother and her two sons who move into a rural house that's inhabited by an evil deity.
Scott Derrickson and C. Robert Cargill, who wrote the original, returned to write the sequel.Ciaran Foy directed.
Hitman: Agent 47, directed by Aleksander Bach, is looking to hit $10 million to $12 million. Starring Homeland’s Rupert Friend as an elite assassin genetically engineered to be the perfect killing machine, the film is opening in more than 3,000 theaters.
Skip Woods and Michael Finch wrote the script for the project, which is the second attempt at adapting the video game franchise. The 2007 movie, starring Timothy Olyphant, earned $13 million when it debuted in November that year, and went on to take in just under $100 million worldwide.
Lionsgate's American Ultra, starring Jesse Eisenberg as a stoner who discovers he was programmed to be a secret agent killing machine, is opening in 2,778 locations and is expected to earn $7 million to $9 million. The action comedy is a reunion for Eisenberg and his Adventureland co-star Kristen Stewart, who plays his character's girlfriend in American Ultra.
The film is directed by Nima Nourizadeh from a script by Max Landis. Connie Britton, John Leguizamo, Topher Grace and Bill Pullman also star in the film, a co-production by PalmStar Media Capital, Likely Story and Circle of Confusion.
This article originally appeared in The Hollywood Reporter.