Los Angeles - The ladies of Pitch Perfect 2 hit all the right notes on opening weekend, amassing a $70.3m debut, according to Rentrak estimates on Sunday.
The Elizabeth Banks-directed sequel to the 2012 sleeper hit and video-on-demand phenomenon cost Universal Pictures only $29m to produce and was expected to open in the $50m range. The first film, for comparison, grossed only $65m domestically across its entire run.
"It's aca-awesome," said Universal Pictures' President of Domestic Distribution Nick Carpou, using one of the catchphrases of the film about a cappella singing. "We knew that the film would be a success, but there's something that happens when movies grow in their success beyond a range that's easily predictable. When that happens, the sky's the limit."
Audiences for the musical comedy starring Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson were 75% female and 62% under the age of 25, according to Universal.
Carpou attributed some of the massive success to savvy positioning and the widespread appeal of the popular music and the charismatic, diverse cast. He noted that ads during the NBA playoffs and a Super Bowl spot helped to grow the film's audience base.
George Miller's critically acclaimed Mad Max: Fury Road landed a distant second in its debut weekend with a solid and expected $44.4m from 3 702 locations. The high-octane, post-apocalyptic film cost a reported $150m to make and stars Charlize Theron and Tom Hardy.
Although it cost significantly more than Pitch Perfect 2 to produce and didn't come close to matching its opening, Mad Max: Fury Road still had a promising and successful first weekend in theatres - especially considering the fact that it is R-rated.
Mad Max: Fury Road also made $65m internationally, bringing its worldwide total to $109.4m.
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