"Eagle Eye" a highflier among weekend offerings

Thu Sep 25, 2008 8:29pm EDT
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By Carl DiOrio

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - "Eagle Eye" has a clear shot at the perch atop the weekend boxoffice.

The DreamWorks/Paramount thriller starring Shia LaBeouf opens Friday with mere pretenders to the domestic throne as competition.

Rated PG-13, "Eagle Eye" -- which co-stars Michelle Monaghan ("The Bourne Supremacy") and was directed by D.J. Caruso ("Disturbia") -- is tracking best with younger males and second best with younger females. The film counts Steven Spielberg among its producers and boasts 85 Imax giant-screen playdates in addition to its roughly 3,500 engagements in traditional venues

"It's the first mainstream, tech-savvy movie that we've ever had in the fall," Imax Filmed Entertainment chief Greg Foster said. "We need to prove ourselves as a year-round enterprise, so it's a big step."

Imax venues helped pad the huge summer run for Warner Bros.' "The Dark Knight." The giant-screen exhibitor's next big release of a commercial Hollywood film comes in November, with Paramount's simultaneous launch of DreamWorks Animation's "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa" in Imax and traditional theaters.

Prerelease tracking surveys suggest a bow of $25 million to $28 million for "Eagle Eye."

"From a competitive standpoint, you're coming into a pretty open market," Paramount vice chairman Rob Moore said. "You also have a star coming off of three hits."

That would be LaBeouf, who ran a 2007-08 trifecta with "Disturbia," "Transformers" and "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull."   Continued...

<p>Cast member Shia LaBeouf (R) poses with actress Megan Fox at the premiere of the movie "Eagle Eye" at the Grauman's Chinese theatre in Hollywood, California September 16, 2008. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>