Box Office Preview: 'X-Men: Days of Future Past' Eyes $100 Million-Plus Debut
The 20th Century Fox tentpole is the seventh installment in Marvel's "X-Men" franchise; Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore comedy "Blended" may only open to $30 million.
Bryan Singer's X-Men: Days of Future Past is expected to score the top opening of the year so far in North America, where it rolls out in theaters 10 p.m. Thursday night.
Prerelease tracking indicates the 20th Century Fox tentpole will cross $100 million over the long Memorial Day weekend, with more bullish observers suggesting $125 million. Either way, that would best the $95 million debut of Captain America: The Winter Solider in late April.
Fox is being more cautious in its projections, saying $95 million to $100 million. The studio notes the strength of Godzilla, which heads into its second weekend.
Singer, who directed the first two X-Men films, withdrew from promoting Days of Future Past after a sex abuse lawsuit was filed against him.
The $200 million-plus movie features actors from the original X-Men trilogy of films and X-Men: First Class, including Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Halle Berry, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Peter Dinklage, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen.
Singer produced the well-reviewed Days of Future Past alongside Lauren Shuler Donner, screenwriter Simon Kinberg and Hutch Parker.
Days of Future Past also opens internationally this weekend.
The other new nationwide offering in North America is the Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore comedy Blended, which may have trouble getting much past $30 million in its debut. One mitigating factor is the film's relatively modest $45 million budget.
The Warner Bros. movie, reuniting the stars for the third time, revolves around two single parents who end up on an African safari together with their kids.