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June 25, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Critics may have made a wreckage out of Disney/Pixar’s Cars 2, but that probably won’t dissuade moviegoers from rubbernecking to see it this weekend, analysts say. While Toy Story 3 opened last year with $110 million, most forecasters suggest that Cars 2 will wind up with a little more than half that amount — $55-60 million. Most producers would kill for an opening that size, but for Pixar it would amount to the second-lowest opening in ten years, putting it ahead of only 2007’s Ratatouille, which collected $47 million in its first weekend. And Cars has 3D and IMAX surcharges going for it. (Some analysts have suggested that Disney’s principal profits related to the movie will not come from theaters or even from home video but from toy products.) Also opening wide this weekend is Bad Teacher, starring Cameron Diaz, Justin Timberlake and Jason Segal. It, too, is receiving dreadful reviews, but unlike Cars 2, which reportedly cost $200 million to make, Bad Teacher reportedly cost only $19 million. Forecasters say that it should earn at least that amount back this weekend and probably wind up with $19-23 million.

UPDATE: Cars 2 got off to a faster start than expected on Friday as it outpaced the competition with $25.7 million in ticket sales. Analysts credited solid matinee business for the winning performance and predicted that the movie will likely exceed the $55-60 million that they initially thought the movie would earn over the three-day weekend.