Pump the hate breaks Thanos. Avengers: Infinity War will finally experience some competition after three weeks atop the box office.
Ryan Reynolds and 20th Century Fox’s Deadpool 2 raked in a huge $18.6 million in Thursday-night previews from 3,785 theaters, a record-breaking number for an R-rated pic.
The previous record holder was It, which grossed $13.5 million. Prior to It, the first Deadpool, released in 2016, had boasted the top preview gross for an R-rated film at $12.7 million. Deadpool went on to earn a massive $132.4 million, the best debut ever for an R-rated film.
As of Friday morning, Deadpool 2 will be playing in a total of 4,349 theaters across North America, where it will surely win the weekend with a debut between $130 million to $150 million, bringing an end to Infinity War‘s three-week rule.
Overseas, Deadpool 2 is opening in most major markets along with its U.S. launch — the major exception is China — for a projected foreign debut of $150 million-plus
Reynolds once again stars as-Deadpool in the follow-up. He produced the sequel and co-wrote the script with his Deadpool partners Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick.
Directed by David Leitch, Deadpool 2 follows the merc with a mouth as he forms the X-Force posse in hopes of stopping the time travelling mutant Cable (Josh Brolin). Morena Baccarin, Julian Dennison, Zazie Beetz, T.J. Miller, Brianna Hildebrand and Jack Kesy co-star.