After an opening night haul of $7.1 million, Thor: The Dark World went on to finish with an estimated $31 million Friday (which includes the totals from the Thursday late night openings) at the U.S. box office.
Most are now projecting Thor: The Dark World to finish the weekend in the low $80 millions. Variety has the Thor: Dark World opening weekend pegged at $83 million, while Deadline is projecting $82 million. It's an impressive debut and a nice increase over the first Thor movie, which had a $65.7 million opening weekend in the U.S. With a lot of recent sequels actually doing less business than the original movies, Marvel Studios has to be glad to see the numbers trending upward.
However, as some have noted, Thor: The Dark World is projected to come in short of the most optimistic $100 million opening weekend projections and short of the $88.4 million that Skyfall did in the same weekend last year.
Of course, the $82-83 million is just a projection, and if we've learned anything from Marvel Studios movies in the past, it's that they often beat early projections. Like most of the Marvel Studios movies, Thor: The Dark World has strong family appeal, so the Saturday and Sunday box office (when kids are out of school) might ultimately prove stronger than projected.