There’s no question the seventh instalment to the “Fast and Furious” franchise, “Furious 7,” is going to have a massive opening weekend.
It’s currently poised to make around $US120 million over the Easter holiday.
That would easily give “Furious 7” the highest-grossing opening weekend in April, surpassing 2014’s $US95 million opening of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”
According to Fandango, the film’s ticket sales are already outpacing the “Captain America” sequel.
Before “Avengers: Age of Ultron” comes to theatres in May, it has a good shot at being the year’s first billion dollar movie.
“This is definitely shaping up to be massive,” vice president and chief analyst of BoxOffice.com Phil Contrino tells Business Insider. “With a movie like this, it’s important not to get too carried away with expectations because … in the lead up to a big movie, that’s all people are talking about and it’s easy to keep saying, ‘it’s going to be bigger, and bigger, and bigger.’ That said, I think it has a legitimate shot at becoming the next member of the $US1 billion global club.”
Contrino notes that would be a huge accomplishment.
Look at the box-office numbers for “Fast and Furious 6” and its not difficult to make that case. The 2013 film made $US788 million worldwide ($US238 million domestic vs. $US550 million overseas).
Boxoffice.com is tracking “Furious 7” to make somewhere between $US275 million and $US280 million stateside during its run in theatres.
“That’s a $US42 million increase right there. The last one did about $US550 million overseas. I think that number’s going to go up exponentially.” says Contrino. “If there’s a $US40 million increase in North America alone, even if there’s a $US10 or $US15 million increase in a bunch of key markets like UK, China, Brazil … that’s going to add up really fast. That $US550 million number is going to increase quite a bit. [If] you look at it that way and we’re not too far from being in the ballpark of $US1 billion globally.”
“Furious 7” has already opened to number one in 12 markets overseas.
The film will also be Universal Studio’s largest film release ever. Not only will it have the widest IMAX release ever on 810 screens worldwide. “Furious 7” will open in over 4,000 Friday in the US and over 10,500 around the world.
In addition to the high-adrenaline, action-packed storyline, which has received great reviews, the seventh instalment serves as a bittersweet sendoff to the franchise’s co-lead Paul Walker who died in 2013.
Walker’s death will be one reason audiences will head out to see “Furious 7.”
“This isn’t just another entry into a franchise,” explains Contrino. “It’s got more significance to it. Its success at the box office, many people are going to see that as a tribute to Paul Walker, and what he brought to the franchise.”
“They’re going to show up for that reason,” he added. “Even if they maybe have skipped some of the other movies, they will show up for this one.”
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