Beauty and the Beast Challenges Batman V Superman's Box Office Record


"Beauty and the Beast" has roared into theaters, packing multiplexes across the country hosting preview night screenings of Disney's latest live-action adaptation. The film, the latest in a long line of remakes of classic animated Disney films, is expected to have a massive opening weekend. The film's already drummed up plenty of business in online ticket sales, and it's even giving previous March blockbuster "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" a run for its money.

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As reported by Deadline, Fandango has revealed that over 1,000 showtimes for "Beauty and the Beast" are already sold out all across the country. The film's pre-sale numbers are reportedly on the level of "Dark Knight," "Avengers" and the "Twilight" films. Fandango predicts that "Beauty and the Beast" will do more in pre-sales than the previous March record-holder, "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice." So far, more than 90% of "Beauty and the Beast's" pre-sales have come from Fandango. The film is already the online ticket seller's biggest family film of all time when it comes to pre-sales.

Early non-Disney estimates have "Beauty and the Beast" earning between $12M-$14M during Thursday's preview night screenings. That easily surpasses the preview night hauls of previous live-action Disney films like "The Jungle Book" ($4.2M) and "Cinderella" ($2.3M). "Beauty and the Beast's" preview night earnings won't be as gigantic as "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice's" from last year. The DC/WB film earned $27.7M on its first Thursday in theaters. Still, box office analysts predict that "Beauty and the Beast" will have a monstrous opening weekend and earn somewhere between $120M and $150M. "BvS" earned $166M when it opened in March 2016.

Experts have kept an eye on "Beauty and the Beast's" box office numbers for a while now. Earlier this month, experts began to predict that the film could grab the record for the biggest March opening of all time, if the estimates of a $150M opening weekend turn out to be a low estimate.

Directed by Bill Condon, “Beauty and the Beast” stars Emma Watson as Belle, Dan Stevens as the Beast, Luke Evans as Gaston, Kevin Kline as Mauricer, Josh Gad as Lefou, Ewan McGregor as Lumiere, Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Plumette, Audra McDonald as Madame Garderobe, Ian McKellen as Cogsworth, and Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts. The film is set to open on March 17.

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