Friday Box Office: Universal’s ‘Fast Five’ Racing Toward $80 Million Weekend

UPDATED: Disney’s “Prom” and the Weinstein Co.’s “Hoodwinked Too!” disappoint on Friday.

Universal’s Fast Five is racing towards a $79 million to $81 million weekend opening after earning an estimated $33 million or $34 million on Friday — the biggest showing of the year by far.

If Universal insiders are correct about the numbers, Fast Five will easily eclipse the $70.5 million earned by Fast & Furious during its opening weekend.

Directed by Justin Lin, Fast Five is a much-needed win for Universal, and has already grossed $43.7 million at the international box office, where it began rolling out last weekend. The pic reunites franchise stars Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster and Tyrese Gibson. Joining the series is Dwayne Johnson.

Universal has a lot riding on the event pic, set this time in Rio de Janeiro. The studio says Fast Five cost $125 million after production incentives and tax credits, but others put the price tag as high as $150 million.

The box office glow enjoyed by Fast Five didn’t extend to the other new films, including tween-driven Prom, the first film greenlit by Disney chair Rich Ross. Prom struggled to gross even $2 million on Friday, meaning it could only open to $6 million, a disappointment for Ross. Financially, Disney isn’t that exposed, having spent only $8 million to produce pic.

Directed by Joe Nussbaum, Prom’s cast includes Aimee Teegarden, Nicholas Braun, Danielle Campbell, Cameron Monaghan and Christine Elise McCarthy.

The Weinstein Co.’s 3D toon Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil also struggled, grossing roughly $1.2 million to $1.3 million on Friday.

Hoodwinked Too! is a co-production with Maurice Kanbar’s Kanbar Entertainment (Kanbar created SKYY Vodka). Insiders say Kanbar put up much of the financing for the $30 million film.

Among holdovers, 20th Century Fox’s 3D toon Rio is expected to finish the weekend at No. 2, followed by Lionsgate’s Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family and Fox 2000’s Water for Elephants. All three films saw bigger than usual drops on Friday, since so many kids were out of school a week ago.


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