Box Office Report: 'Wrath of the Titans' Earns Solid $1 Mil in Midnight Runs
The sequel returns Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes in the lead roles; franchise newcomers include Rosamund Pike, Edgar Ramirez and Toby Kebbell.
Warner Bros.' Wrath of the Titans grossed $1 million in 1,490 Thursday midnight runs as it began rolling out at the domestic box office.
The 3D sequel returns Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes in the lead roles and is directed by Jonathan Liebesman. Actors new to the franchise include Rosamund Pike, Venezuela's Edgar Ramirez and the U.K.-born Toby Kebbell.
Louis Leterrier directed Clash of the Titans, which debuted just north of $61 million during Easter weekend in 2010. Warners doesn't expect the sequel to reach the same level, since this weekend isn't a holiday. But by opening a week before Easter, Warners can take advantage of spring break, which is staggered over the next two weeks.
Wrath is projected to earn $35 million to $40 million during its opening weekend.
In 2010, Warners was widely criticized for rushing to convert Clash of the Titans into 3D to boost its box-office potential. Wrath also was converted to 3D after it was shot, but the studio says the quality of the conversion was far superior.
Wrath moves into a total of 3,545 theaters on Friday, including 2,900 3D locations and 292 Imax runs. The sequel makes a major push overseas, opening in every major market except Japan.
In North America, Wrath and Relativity's family-friendly Snow White entry Mirror Mirror -- starring Julia Roberts, Lily Collins and Armie Hammer -- are likely to be beaten by box-office monster The Hunger Games, which is expected to gross $60 million or more in its second outing.
Hunger Games, which has eclipsed Dr. Seuss' The Lorax as the top-grossing film of 2012 domestically, will cross the $200 million mark on Friday.
Mirror Mirror hopes to take advantage of being the only PG title in the marketplace until April 27, when Sony opens The Pirates! Band of Misfits.
Relativity is projecting an opening in the $22 milion-$25 million range for Mirror Mirror. The retelling of the classic fairy tale is an important property for Relativity as the company tries to produce its own films. Mirror Mirror, shot in Montreal, cost $80 million to make after rebates. Relativity sold off foreign rights and says its exposure on the production budget is $30 million (that doesn't include marketing costs).
Mirror Mirror is the first of two Snow White movies opening this year, though Universal's Snow White and the Huntsman, which bows in the summer, isn't a family film.