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Box Office Preview: ‘Oz’ Looks to Defeat ‘Incredible Burt Wonderstone,’ ‘The Call’

Oz The Great and Powerful Williams in Bubble - H 2013

"Burt Wonderstone" — featuring Steve Carell and Jim Carrey as dueling Las Vegas magicians — could even have trouble beating Halle Berry thriller "The Call" despite its high-profile comedic cast; "Oz" will cross $100 million on Thursday.

Disney holdover is expected to easily trounce new offering and at the weekend box office.

A wild card at the specialty box office is Harmony Korine’s R-rated comedy , starring lead James Franco opposite Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Benson.

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In terms of nationwide releases, the landscape looks particularly unfunny for New Line’s star-studded comedy , which reteams Steve Carell and Jim Carrey, who worked together on . also stars Olivia Wilde, Alan Arkin, Steve Buscemi and James Gandolfini.

is expected to open in the $11 to $14 million range, one of the lowest openings for a Carrey or Carell comedy. Roughly the same estimate is being floated for Sony/TriStar’s thriller , starring Halle Berry and Abigail Breslin.

, which opened to an impressive $79.1 million last weekend, could gross $35 million to north of $40 million in its second outing. With some college kids already out of school, prequel has done impressive weekday business, with a domestic cume of $97.7 million through Wednesday. is set to cross the $100 million mark on Thursday in North America, becoming only the second film of 2013 to do so after .

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If indeed underperforms, it will mark the second New Line and Warner Bros. title to disappoint after . But with a production pricetag of $32 million, is far less of a financial risk. Directed by Dan Scardino, the comedy tells the story of (Carell), a Las Vegas magician who reteams with a former partner (Buscemi) to take on up-and-coming street magician Steve Gray (Carrey).

Box office observers believe , rated R and costing a modest $13 million to produce, could overperform if it does well among African-American moviegoers, a demo Sony targeted, in addition to women.

In the film, Berry plays a 911 operator who receives a call from a girl who has been abducted. The operator soon learns she must confront a killer (Michael Ecklund) from her past. Brad Anderson directed the film, which was produced and financed by Troika Pictures and WWE Studios.

opens in three theaters in New York and Los Angeles. Financed and produced by Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures, the comedy — garnering decent reviews — is being distributed and marketed by A24 Pictures, which is backed by Guggenheim Partners, an investment group that also owns Dick Clark Productions and Guggenheim Digital Media, parent company of





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