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The early estimates for Friday’s box office are in, and the numbers reveal that Deadpool is heading for a franchise high for the X-Men series. Opening to a massive 47.5 million, the film is expected to close its opening weekend with 115-120 million, for a 130-135 million 4 day Presidents Day Weekend.
Early projections saw the film open with 60-70 million, but a massive 12.7 million in previews on Thursday showed that interest in the Ryan Reynolds vehicle was much higher than first anticipated. If the current estimates hold, not only will Deadpool break the record for largest opening in February, which was previously held by Fifty Shades of Grey (85 million), it will also set a new franchise record for the X-Men series, breaking the 102.7 million opening weekend of X-Men: The Last Stand.
The success of Deadpool will be a huge relief for Ryan Reynolds. The former big screen superstar has struggled to prove himself as a reliable box office draw, seeing several underperformers in recent years such as Self/Less, R.I.P.D., Turbo, and most notoriously, Green Lantern. If the film’s current projections hold, it will already outgross its 58 million dollar budget domestically. This will be great news for 20th Century Fox, who has already ordered a sequel for the Merc with the Mouth.