Equalizer 3 Tracking to Open #1 at the Box Office

Denzel Washington and Antoine Fuqua re-team for The Equalizer 3.

Robert McCall is going out on top. The Equalizer 3, the final chapter of director Antoine Fuqua's adaptation of the '80s TV series starring Denzel Washington as the vigilante, is projected to take the No. 1 spot at the box office this weekend. According to Variety, tracking has The Equalizer 3 pacing for $28 million to $30 million between Friday and Sunday, and $33 million to $40 million over the four-day Labor Day weekend. The action-thriller will put up better numbers than the opening weekends of DC's Blue Beetle ($25 million) and Sony's own Gran Turismo ($17.4 million), but will come in below the three-day openings of 2014's The Equalizer ($34 million) and 2018's The Equalizer 2 ($36 million).

Equalizer 3's projected opening would rank the movie among the best four-day Labor Day weekends of all time, behind only Marvel's Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings ($94.6 million) and ahead of 2007's Halloween reboot ($30.5 million), Crazy Rich Asians ($28.5 million), and 2014's Guardians of the Galaxy ($22.9 million). 

The official logline: "Since giving up his life as a government assassin, Robert McCall (Washington) has struggled to reconcile the horrific things he's done in the past and finds a strange solace in serving justice on behalf of the oppressed. Finding himself surprisingly at home in Southern Italy, he discovers his new friends are under the control of local crime bosses. As events turn deadly, McCall knows what he has to do: become his friends' protector by taking on the mafia."

The threequel reunites Washington with his Man on Fire co-star Dakota Fanning, whose CIA analyst Emma Collins is tasked with helping McCall dole out his brand of justice on the Sicilian Mafia. In an interview with ComicBook, Fuqua was receptive to the idea that audiences could view The Equalizer 3 as a "spiritual sequel" to the 2004 Tony Scott film.

"We never talked about it collectively, but I've thought about it that way," Fuqua said. "You know when Dakota said she was interested, I thought 'Ah, yeah! This is Man on Fire but years later – and this is what he's doing,' you know? But I never said that to them because they're just in the characters [of Equalizer 3] in those moments. But when you see them together, man – when I saw them on set – it was just like... [holds hands up] just smiling – I was just like 'Yeah...' [laughing]."

The Equalizer 3 is in theaters Friday.