Los Angeles — The R-rated Deadpool has taken the box office by storm, annihilating records with an eye-popping $135m from its first three days in U.S. theatres, according to comScore estimates Sunday.
The Fox film, which stars Ryan Reynolds as the foul-mouthed superhero, easily trounced last year's record-setting $85.2m February debut of the erotic drama Fifty Shades of Grey. It also became the biggest R-rated opening ever, surpassing The Matrix Reloaded, which opened to $91.8m in May of 2003.Analysts are predicting that the Tim Miller-directed film, which cost a mere $58m to produce, could go on to make $150m by the end of the holiday weekend. As recently as Thursday, Deadpool was expected to pull in only $80m across the three days, but the Marvel comic, often a best-seller, proved its popular appeal and then some — and it didn't have to compromise with a PG-13 rating either.
"This movie is the very definition of an expectation-buster. Nobody saw this coming," said Paul Dergarabedian, comScore's senior media analyst. "It doesn't feel like a cookie-cutter superhero movie. It feels like something unique. You've got to sometimes take risks and go against conventional wisdom to come out a winner."IMAX screens accounted for an estimated $16.8m of Deadpool's total. The film, notably, was not released in 3D.Deadpool also had a massive showing internationally, bringing in an estimated $125m from 62 territories for a $260m global total.The debut is also a bit of a superhero redemption story for Reynolds whose costly Green Lantern adaptation disappointed audiences and at the box office in 2011.Coming in a distant second was last weekend's No. 1 film Kung Fu Panda 3 with $19.7m, which fell only 7%. The DreamWorks Animation film has earned $93.9m in just three weeks in theatres.In third place, the R-rated Dakota Johnson and Rebel Wilson rom-com How to Be Single didn't make any big waves with its $18.8m out of the gates. The Warner Bros. film cost $38m to produce and provided some counter programming to the hyper violent Deadpool.
The dismally reviewed Ben Stiller comedy Zoolander 2, meanwhile, debuted in fourth place to only $15.7m. The Paramount film, which Stiller directed, cost around $50m to make. The first film, Zoolander, opened in 2001, just weeks after the September 11 attacks, to a meek $15.5m and went on to gross only $45.2m in North America. It found a second life on home video, though and has become a quotable cultural staple. Audiences seem less enthusiastic this time around, though.
Dergarabedian thinks that both How to Be Single and Zoolander 2 could see a healthy uptick from the Valentine's Day crowd Sunday.But overall, the box office is healthy, up an estimated 3.2% from last year and it's all thanks to the snarky, fourth-wall-busting Deadpool and its historic debut.
"These are summer numbers," Dergarabedian said. "It's summer in February."
Deadpool director Tim Miller reportedly quit the sequel after he and Ryan Reynolds disagreed over the casting of Cable. Read More »
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