While it's hardly a smash hit, Sony's second original sci-fi tentpole of the summer is at least faring better than their first one.
"Elysium," starring Matt Damon, earned a modest $1.6 million in Thursday night screenings, beginning at 10 p.m. That's slightly above Will Smith and M. Night Shyamalan's big-budget "After Earth," which, after opening to $1 million Thursday night, went on to crater domestically for Sony with a weak $27 million weekend.
Tom Cruise's "Oblivion," another original sci-fi property, which earned $1.1 million in Thursday ticket sales this past April before going on to a $37 million debut in the U.S.
Produced for $115 million, "Elysium" is expected to earn an estimated $35 million this weekend in what's looking like a very crowded late summer frame for Hollywood.
Disney's "Planes" and Fox's "Percy Jackson" sequel will target family audiences while early riser "We're the Millers," starring Jennifer Aniston, already opened to a strong Wednesday to $6.8 million.
As of Friday morning, "Elysium" was still the favorite to win the weekend.
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