A solid $2.2 million late-night gross Wednesday is just the beginning for Sony's "This Is the End," which expands today nationwide ahead of Warner Bros.' Friday launch of superhero behemoth "Man of Steel."
"This Is the End," which screened at 2,000-plus late-night locations, is expected to gross in the mid-to-high $30 millions in five days, a sturdy start for the $32 million-budgeted apocalyptic ensemble comedy.
Meanwhile, "Man of Steel" should land on either side of $100 million from Friday to Sunday.
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Sony is using "Now You See Me" as a comparison for the "This Is the End" late-night gross; the Lionsgate-Summit pic earned $1.5 million starting at 7 p.m. on June 20, which translated to a better-than-expected $19 million opening three-day gross.
"This Is the End," which marks the directorial debuts for Seth Rogen and producing partner Evan Goldberg, is a "Where's Waldo" of comedy stars playing themselves, including Rogen, Jay Baruchel, Jonah Hill, Danny McBride, James Franco, Craig Robinson and Michael Cera. The pic begins its overseas roll out starting next weekend in the U.K.
Sony expands the film today to 3,055 domestic playdates. "Man of Steel" will open at 4,200-plus locations.