Hollywood News: Will GTA 4 Beat Iron Man?

The LA Weekly's Nikki Finke, clearly still delirious from her recent dental work, is curious how much today's release of the new Rockstar game, "Grand Theft Auto IV" will affect the box office numbers this weekend.

OK, seriously. She must still be on some really good pain meds.

I will admit that I am quite the gamer geek. I was one of the first to get GTA: San Andreas" when it came out, complete with the players guide and everything. Despite the grumblings of my significant other, I played the game religiously for hours. Daily. Weekly. And even when I was fully engrossed in the game, I still had time to go to the movies, if for no other reason but to rest my thumbs and fix my bleary eyes on something oyther than my Playstation.

All of this hyperbole is amid speculation that Rockstar's new game will break records for sales in its first week (sources say it will clear $400 million.) But let's be honest here: Even if the new GTA game was the be-all, end-all of video games, it's not going to make a dent in the box office this weekend. Not with this weekend being the start of the official Summer movie season. Not with one of the most anticipated geek movies in the past few years coming out on Friday.

My guess is that GTA fanatics, will give their fingers a rest and cart themselves off to the theater to see Iron Man in all its glory. I think most people will give up a couple hours of their time away from rampaging though the virtual Liberty City to see the new film.

In fact, most other studios have decided not to try to compete with Iron Man at all. The only other film opening in wide release this Friday is "Made of Honor" a 30-something rom-com with the McDreamy guy. So with those two films, you have both the sappy romantic, chick-flick crowd and pretty much everyone else. And with this being the official start of the Summer movie season, the box office is only going to heat up more at this point.

So yeah, I think that Grand Theft Auto is going to be a very popular game, but when it comes to the box office, it doesnt stand a chance to Iron Man.

We'll see what the numbers are next Monday and I will be happy to flaunt my considerable prognostication skills then.
As always, stay tuned.

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