American Sniper will shoot its way past the $300 million mark in North America over Presidents Day weekend in another major victory for the war-themed drama.
Better yet, Clint Eastwood‘s film is on course to become the top-grossing release of 2014 (it opened in select theaters Christmas Day before expanding nationwide). To date, the record-holder is The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1 ($335.8 million), followed by Guardians of the Galaxy ($331.2 million).
Sniper ended Friday with a domestic total of $291.5 million and will jump the $300 million mark sometime on Saturday or Sunday to finish the long holiday weekend with a domestic total of nearly $310 million.
From Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow, American Sniper is nominated for six Oscars, including best picture and best actor for Bradley Cooper, who stars as the late Navy SEAL Chris Kyle. The movie, costing roughly $60 million to make and sure to generate a hearty profit, has been unique in galvanizing both Middle America and liberal markets.
American Sniper is the most successful war-themed film of all time domestically, eclipsing Steven Spielberg‘s WWII classic Saving Private Ryan, not accounting for inflation. Saving Private Ryan, released in 1998, earned $216.7 million in North America. Taking inflation into account, that would equal roughly $312 million in today’s terms, a mark Sniper is about to overtake.
Overseas, where it’s a far tougher sell, American Sniper has grossed roughly $80 million.