The movie — boasting a cast led by Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie — has three weeks left in which to make its final marketing push and boost awareness. And some with access to surveys believe its opening weekend box-office gross will come in closer to $50 million, considering the film’s star power.
The adult-skewing title hopes to serve as counter-programming to commercial summer fare. It’s also an original story amid a sea of franchise installments or movies based on well-known IP.
A $30 million start would be in line with Tarantino’s Django Unchained, which opened to $30.1 million in December 2012, but notably behind Inglorious Basterds, which launched in late August 2009 to $38.1 million in a career best for the filmmaker, not adjusted for inflation.
Comparisons to The Hateful Eight are difficult, since that film opened first in a limited run.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in May. Its current Rotten Tomatoes score is 92 percent.
The story, set in 1969, follows faded television star (DiCaprio) and his longtime stunt double, Cliff Booth (Pitt), as they try to make sense of a changing Hollywood. They’re also neighbors of the actress Sharon Tate (Robbie), the real-life actress murdered by the Manson gang.