5th UPDATE, 6:05 PM: I’ve been watching the gross estimates rise all day on director Luc Besson’s Lucy, which is great news for its star Scarlett Johansson and for Universal Pictures which is distributing. As of 6 PM PST, the sci-fi actioner is on course to bring in a $15M to $17M Friday (which includes the 2.746M late night gross last night) for a revised estimate of anywhere between $37M and $42M. It’s playing in 3,173 locales. Paramount/MGM’s Hercules, in 3,595 locations, is still on track with earlier estimates and still on course for a $27M to $30M three-day, while And So It Goes is tracking a little better than $4M and may end up anywhere between $4M and $6M. The other newbie is The Fluffy Movie which may make anywhere between $1.7M and $2.5M for the weekend. More to come later.
2nd, 3rd and 4TH UPDATES, 12:50 PM, 1:10 PM, 4:31 PM: The Scarlett Johansson sci-fi actioner Lucy is strong in matinees today and is expected to pull in more than $30M (probably mid to high, something like $32M-$36M) and Hercules right under $30M (maybe $27M-$30M) as it looks now at 4:31 PM. More numbers will come as the day progresses but expecting Lucy to nab $14M-$15M tonight (includes the late-night number of $2.746M) which is up from the 12:50 estimate. and Hercules taking in around $10M-$12M tonight (includes the $2.1M late-night numbers), that has been pretty much the same all day today. Like Lucy‘s, its reviews are also mixed.
The Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson-starrer also launched yesterday in 11 international markets, including Australia and Russia, to gross an estimated $5M. The breakdown? $2.6M in Russia, which Paramount says is 40% higher than G.I. Joe: Retaliation and marks the third-best opening day of the year. The studio says its Malaysian gross of $335K is also 10% above G.I. Joe 2. In Australia, Hercules opened to No. 1 with a $590K take (and Par says it nearly doubled Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes, the #2 film in the marketplace).
It doesn’t hurt that Johnson was considered the No. 1 international star of last year both with G.I. Joe 2 and Fast And The Furious 6 in the marketplace. For those of you wondering, earlier this year, Lionsgate’s The Legend Of Hercules took in only $42.6M internationally with Kellan Lutz starring. Johnson obviously has a much bigger imprint internationally so we expect this one to do much better business. Lionsgate’s version of the film also only opened to $8.8M and went on to gross around $18M and (yawn) change domestically.