‘Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3’ Rocketing To Around $14M Thursday; ‘Super Mario Bros’ Jumping To Half Billion U.S. – Early Box Office

EXCLUSIVE: Distribution sources are telling us that Disney Marvel Studios’ final James Gunn movie, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, is doing around $14M in previews. As we always say, that can go higher or lower by the morning. Thursday previews kicked off at 3PM, and there were 100 Imax shows on Wednesday. Note, these figures do not come from Disney.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 posted $17M on its Thursday night, repping 30% of its first Friday of $56M, on its way to a $146.5M opening weekend. The first two Guardians of the Galaxy movies got A CinemaScores,

That said, projections on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 have been wild. On early tracking three weeks ago it was at $130M, then lowered down to $110M, then I heard an estimate from an exhibitor today that was even lower, and unspeakable. Let’s just have this pic play out. Global outlook is $250M. Keep in mind, Marvel movies can always be frontloaded. While reviews have settled to around 79% certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, the lowest of the trilogy (following the first film’s 92% certified fresh and 85% certified fresh), GOTG3‘s current audience score is 97% on RT (the first 2014 movie received 92% audience score on RT, while GOTG2 was lower at 87%). Advance ticket sales for GOTG3, I hear, have picked up and are nearing the $37M threshold that Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania had on its Thursday eve before a $106.1M 3-day, $120.3M 4-day opening.

We’re also hearing that 62% of GOTG3‘s presales are for tonight or tomorrow. That’s encouraging when juxtaposed to the 65%-71% presales tied to the first Thursday/Friday of the last four Marvel movies.

Meanwhile, Illumination/Universal/Nintendo Super Mario Bros Movie will cross the $500M mark either tonight or tomorrow. Wednesday was $1.98M getting the videogame feature to $498M. That will rep 30 to 31 days for the pic to the half billion stateside mark. Pixar’s Incredibles 2 accomplished that box office feat in 24 days, still the fastest to do so for an animated movie. Super Mario Bros will be the second-fastest to a half billion stateside at its pace. Post pandemic, Super Mario Bros will be the fourth movie to cross $500M after Spider-Man: No Way Home ($814.1M), Top Gun: Maverick ($718.7M) and Avatar: The Way of Water ($683.9M).


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