"Valentine's Day" poised for box-office win

Thu Feb 11, 2010 10:20pm EST
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By Carl DiOrio

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Garry Marshall's "Valentine's Day," which opens Friday, is a prohibitive favorite to top the four-day frame that includes the movie's namesake holiday and Presidents Day.

The ensemble romantic comedy from Warner Bros. is expected to claim the weekend's box-office crown with $45 million or more in domestic receipts.

Two other big pictures also are set to bow wide. Twentieth Century Fox sends out kids' movie "Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief," while Universal debuts the Benicio Del Toro-starring horror remake "The Wolfman."

Date-movie couples will represent key support for "Valentine's," though the PG-13 movie is expected to skew heavily female. Figuring among "Valentine's" cast are Anne Hathaway, Topher Grace, Jennifer Garner, Ashton Kutcher, Jessica Biel, Patrick Dempsey, Jessica Alba, Taylor Lautner, Queen Latifah and Jamie Foxx.

"We're going to have a big weekend," Warners distribution chief Dan Fellman said. "All the stars are aligned, no pun intended."

Directed by Chris Columbus -- who's touted in "Percy" commercials as a "Harry Potter" helmer -- PG-rated "Percy" features teen Logan Lerman in the title role. Based on a series of youth adventure novels, "Percy" should pull in upward of $30 million through Monday.

"There could be a bit of a traffic jam this weekend," Fox distribution boss Bruce Snyder said. "But we're well positioned with a family movie, as there hasn't been one for a couple weeks."

The release of the Joe Johnston-directed "Wolfman," co-starring Anthony Hopkins, was delayed four times because of production and marketing considerations. The film originally was set to unspool in November 2008.   Continued...

<p>Cast member Jessica Biel poses at the premiere of "Valentine's Day" at the Grauman's Chinese theatre in Hollywood, California February 8, 2010. The movie opens in the U.S. on February 12. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>