Disney-Marvel's “Thor: Ragnarok” is heading for a stellar opening weekend with $121 million at 4,080 North American locations — the fourth best launch of 2017.
The third Thor movie is also putting an emphatic end to the month-long box office slump that saw the worst October in a decade. Among 2017 titles, its debut weekend trails only “Beauty and the Beast” at $174.8 million, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” at $146.5 million and “It” at $123.4 million.
STXfilms' R-rated “A Bad Moms Christmas”, which opened Wednesday, is heading for a respectable $21.6 million for its first five days. A24's launch of Greta Gerwig's “Lady Bird” posted the best platform opening of the year with $375,612 on four screens for an impressive $93,903 per-screen average.
“Thor: Ragnarok” wound up over-performing recent estimates, which had been in the $100 million to $118 million range. With Chris Hemsworth reprising the title role, “Thor: Ragnarok” will finish far above its predecessors, nearly doubling the 2011 opening of “Thor” at $65.7 million and coming in 41% above the 2013 sequel “Thor: The Dark World” at $85.7 million.
“Thor: Ragnarok” is directed by Taika Waititi from a screenplay by Eric Pearson. It also stars Tom Hiddleston, Cate Blanchett, Idris Elba, Jeff Goldblum, Tessa Thompson, Karl Urban, Mark Ruffalo, and Anthony Hopkins. The character of Thor, based on Norse mythology, was created in 1962 by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and Jack Kirby for Marvel Comics.
Audiences and critics have responded with plenty of enthusiasm. “Thor: Ragnarok” received an A CinemaScore from audiences, marking the 13th consecutive A-range CinemaScore for Marvel Studios. The Rotten Tomatoes score is 93%, making it one of the best-reviewed Marvel Cinematic Universe titles.
The film has also taken in $306 million overseas, including $109 million in its international launch last week in 52% of foreign markets. It expanded to most other overseas territories this weekend and dominated internationally with $151 million, including $55 million in China.