'The Great Gatsby's' opening weekend gets off to strong start

“So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past,” F. Scott Fitzgerald famously wrote in “The Great Gatsby,” a melancholy observation on the struggle to transform one’s dreams into future glory.

Against the box-office current facing Baz Luhrmann’s “Great Gatsby” adaptation in its opening weekend in theaters, the bedazzled 3-D drama got off to an auspicious start, hauling in a robust $3.25 million Thursday night in its 10 p.m. debut at approximately 2,500 locations.

Competing against newly minted international blockbuster “Iron Man 3,” which is expected to continue its box-office supremacy in its second week of release this weekend, pre-release tracking estimates indicate that “Gatsby” could open to an impressive $45 million.

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That figure is even more impressive considering it’s one of the few movies targeted at women in a summer season heaving with bombastic fanboy fare featuring gunfights, car chases and alien invasions.

As of Friday morning, “Gatsby” had already outperformed other female-oriented films, such as “Sex and the City” (which hauled in just $2.5 million in its late-show opening night debut) and its 2010 sequel, which took $3 million during the same period.

“The Great Gatsby” is to expand to 3,535 locations through the weekend before going on to screen at the Cannes Film Festival on May 15 -- a precedent-setting inversion of the festival-premiere-to-theatrical-release model.


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