Box Office: 'Straight Outta Compton' Powering to Impressive Friday Opening

Jaimie Trueblood/Universal Pictures

Warner Bros.' 1960's spy movie 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E.' looking at a more modest bow.

Straight Outta Compton, Universal's biopic about groundbreaking hip-hop group N.W.A, is looking as if it will rack up an opening Friday box office haul in the $15-million-plus range, possibly approaching $20 million, based on preliminary estimates.

The film, bowing in 2,757 North American theaters Friday, collected $4.96 million Thursday night after shows began rolling out at 8 p.m. in 2,264 theaters. The drama is currently on track to hit an opening in the mid-to-high $40 million range, with some observers predicting it could hit $50 million or more.

Warner Bros. period spy tale The Man From U.N.C.L.E. is looking at more modest returns. It kicked off Thursday night with $900,000, and its Friday take could amount to about $5 million, with an opening weekend in the mid-teen millions.

Directed by F. Gary Gray, the Universal and Legendary film stars O'Shea Jackson Jr. as his real-life father, Ice Cube, Corey Hawkins as Dr. Dre, Jason Mitchell as Eazy-E, Aldis Hodge as MC Ren and Neil Brown Jr. as DJ Yella. The film, opening in 2,751 theaters this weekend, is produced by former N.W.A members Ice Cube and Dr. Dre (among others).

Due to a strong marketing campaign and positive reviews, most box-office experts have been predicting Straight Outta Compton could climb as high as $40 million to $50 million in its debut.

This weekend's other new offering, Man From U.N.C.L.E., is opening in 3,450 theaters. Directed by Guy Ritchie, the film stars Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer as a CIA agent and a KGB operative who work on a joint mission against a mysterious criminal organization. The film has been tracking to open in the high teens for Warner Bros. and Davis Entertainment.

August 14, 1:15 p.m.: Updated to include latest box office estimates.