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Ultron Posts Sixth-Best Midnight Total

May 1st, 2015

The Avengers: Age of Ultron

Age of Ultron launched domestically on Thursday night with $27.6 million in preview screenings, the sixth-best start of all-time. Perhaps more importantly for gauging the film’s likely performance this weekend, that’s up 48% from the $18.7 million earned by The Avengers three years ago. That early $9 million lead bodes well for an all-time opening weekend record when the dust settles on Monday morning.

Thursday night numbers are always a little bit of an imprecise indicator of the final weekend performance for a film. The biggest Thursday night of all time was posted by Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II, which earned $43.5 million on its way to a $169 million weekend. Better comparisons might be The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. The former earned $18.5 million on Thursday night and $158.4 million for the weekend, while the latter started with $30.6 million and finished the weekend with $160.9 million. Essentially all that happened in that case was the same audience watched the film at slightly different times, although the Aurora shootings may have dulled the overall weekend take for The Dark Knight Rises.

All told, that points to a weekend of around $216 million for Age of Ultron, assuming it maintains its $9 million head start over The Avengers. But it could yet surprise on the high or low end for a whole host of reasons: weather, a big breaking news event, good or bad word-of-mouth, among others. A reasonable range seems like $200 million–$230 million going in to Friday.

Bruce Nash,

Filed under: Midnight Box Office, Avengers: Age of Ultron