‘Jack the Giant Slayer’ opens Friday — but who will go see it?

Feb. 28, 2013 | 10:32 a.m.

"Jack the Giant Slayer" star Nicholas Hoult and director Bryan Singer consult on the set of the film. (Daniel Smith / Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

Bryan Singer and cast members, including Stanley Tucci, far left, and Ewan McGregor, third from left, on the set of the film. (Daniel Smith / Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

Stanley Tucci, left, and Ewen Bremner in "Jack the Giant Slayer." (Daniel Smith / Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

Ewan McGregor, from left, Eleanor Tomlinson and Nicholas Hoult star in "Jack The Giant Slayer." (Daniel Smith/Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

“Jack the Giant Slayer” opens Friday amid predictions that the film will not slay the box office on opening weekend.

And some are wondering whether “Jack,” amid the beanstalks, can locate its audience.

Pre-release tracking surveys predict a $25-million opening this weekend for “Jack the Giant Slayer.”  Adding to the box office obstacles? “Oz the Great and Powerful” hits theaters March 8, just one week after “Jack.”

It’s no secret “Jack” director Bryan Singer had difficulty finding a tone that satisfied him.  As Singer told the Los Angeles Times’ Nicole Sperling, he did not want that “colorful and fantastical” approach of “Alice in Wonderland.”  Neither did he want the “purposefully dark and aggressive” approach of “Snow White and the Huntsman.”

So, what did he end up with?   For one thing, a very expensive movie — $195 million.

A midstream script rewrite, courtesy of Christopher McQuarrie, was among the factors that increased the cost of the film.   The rewrite was a huge improvement, Singer told the L.A. Times.

But still, some question whether Singer will reach his target audience. Industry guru Vincent Bruzzese posed the question to Entertainment Weekly: Is it a family movie like “Chronicles or Narnia,” or is it an “adult-oriented fantasy-action” film?

Singer wants to snag the family audience, he told IGN. The director said he took his cue from “The Princess Bride” and attempted to make a film that is scary “but not upsetting.”

The movie “has a bigger on-screen body count than any movie I’ve done before,” Singer told the L.A. Times.  Presenting the slaying “in a way that’s fun” was a challenge, he said.   Sound effects were toned down — such as a crunching sound when the giants ate the humans.

Polls haven’t looked promising for the family audience, but filmmakers remain hopeful.

“Based on the testing, kids love the movie,” said producer David Dobkin.

– Amy Hubbard


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One Response to ‘Jack the Giant Slayer’ opens Friday — but who will go see it?

  1. trish says:

    Saw the pre screening n loved it!! So did my husband.

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