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'Ride Along 2,' 'Revenant' to again vie for No. 1 at box office

Ryan Faughnder
Los Angeles Times (TNS)

Kevin Hart and Leonardo DiCaprio are poised for a box-office rematch this weekend.
The Hart-starring cop comedy "Ride Along 2" and DiCaprio's Oscar-nominated western epic "The Revenant" will probably top the domestic charts again, with each expected to gross around $20 million Friday through Sunday in the U.S. and Canada.
Those two contenders are expected to comfortably fend off Hollywood's three competing new releases: Sony Pictures' teen sci-fi movie "The 5th Wave," Lionsgate's raunchy generational comedy "Dirty Grandpa" and STX Entertainment's horror offering "The Boy."
"Ride Along 2," with Hart again starring alongside Ice Cube, grossed $41 million in its debut over the long Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend. The sequel was closely followed by "The Revenant," which added $37.5 million to its total after picking up 12 Oscar nominations, including best picture and lead actor (DiCaprio).
"The Revenant," released by 20th Century Fox and co-financed by New Regency, has taken in about $97 million domestically as of Monday since its limited Christmas Day release. The 19th-century tale of revenge in the unforgiving wilderness cost $135 million to make.
The upcoming weekend follows a strong start for the 2016 box-office year, thanks in part to the strength of "Star Wars: The Force Awakens."
"The 5th Wave," starring Chloe Grace Moretz, is expected to take in $11 million to $13 million in its domestic debut, though the studio is projecting a more conservative $8 million for the young-adult novel adaptation.
Moretz plays a teen trying to save her younger brother in the midst of a series of devastating alien attacks. The movie, co-financed by LStar Capital, cost $38 million to produce. Sony is hoping the movie, based on a book by Rick Yancey, will appeal to audiences overseas.
"Dirty Grandpa," the R-rated comedy starring Robert DeNiro and Zac Efron, is expected to take in roughly $10 million through Sunday.
Meanwhile, STX's horror movie "The Boy" is on track for $9 million to $11 million, on a production budget of $10 million.
The PG-13 supernatural thriller follows an American nanny hired by an English family to care for a life-sized doll that they treat like a living child. STX co-financed the production with Lakeshore Entertainment. It's tracking best among teens and young women.
Also opening Friday in limited release is the Chinese fantasy movie "Monster Hunt," a blockbuster that last year became the highest grossing movie ever in its home country with $381 million. It's debuting in roughly 30 U.S. theaters this week.

Leonardo DiCaprio stars in “The Revenant.” The film opens Thursday at Regal West Manchester Stadium 13, Frank Theatres Queensgate Stadium 13 and R/C Hanover Movies.
Ice Cube and Kevin Hart in "Ride Along 2."