Paramount/Skydance Media’s Ang Lee directed Gemini Man starring Will Smith rang up $1.6M in Thursday night previews that started at 7PM from 3,000 showtimes. Also, MGM/UA’s animated feature The Addams Family had a great start with $1.25M at 3,000 locations that started at 4PM.
That figure is just under what The Magnificent Seven pulled in back in September 2016 in its previews with $1.75M (for a $12.7M opening day, $34.7M opening weekend) and ahead of Millennium/Lionsgate’s Angel Has Fallen ($1.5M previews, $7.95M opening day, $21.3M opening) and Ad Astra ($1.5M previews, $7.1M opening day, $19M opening weekend). Among Will Smith’s fresh IP titles, Gemini Man blows away 2015’s crime noir Focus ($900K) and 2013’s After Earth ($1.1M) though that was at a time when Thursday night previews weren’t as potent as they are now.
Gemini Man is expected to debut to $24M-$27M this weekend as Warner Bros./Village Roadshow/Bron Studios The Joker which is projected to do around $42M. Co-financed with China’s Alibaba and Fosun Pictures, the latter which has China rights, Gemini Man cost $138M. The pic uses the 120 frames per second technology, and is ideally seen in 3D, which a third of its 3,642 theater count is accommodating. The pic follows Smith as a hitman who hunts down a younger clone of himself.