'Batman v Superman' strong-arms Thursday box office sales
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Studio estimates say "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" has earned an impressive $27.7 million from its preview screenings.
Warner Bros. released estimates Friday saying the haul from the Thursday night showings includes $3.6 million from IMAX screens.
The film stars Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill as the dueling superheroes and cost a reported $250 million to produce. Analysts predict it could earn around $150 million this weekend despite largely negative reviews.
The $27.7 million debut is a record-breaker for the Easter weekend slot. "Furious 7" previously held that title with its $15.8 million launch last year.
But it's still a far cry from the biggest Thursday night opening ever. That distinction goes to "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," which brought in $57 million on a Thursday night in December.