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‘Fast’ drives $3.8M during midnight bow

'Thor' grosses $8 million in overseas run

Universal’s “Fast Five” got off to a solid start Thursday night with nationwide midnight screenings totaling $3.8 million from 1,132 plexes, making it the studio’s highest ever midnight take.

Meanwhile, having already opened in many key overseas territories, Paramount’s summer blockbuster “Thor” rolled on toward its May 6 U.S. opening, with an estimated total gross of $8 million from 25 markets.

“Fast Five” is on track for a boffo opening weekend, likely north of $60 million, though some B.O. pundits say that could very well be higher in the $70 million-range. Pic’s late-night tally will be included in today’s grosses.

“Five,” U’s latest installment in the global $1 billion franchise, will score this year’s best-yet domestic opening, beating Fox’s previous benchmark holder, “Rio,” which opened earlier this month with just shy of $40 million.

“Fast Five” bows wide today at 3,643 North American locations.

With an added week of playtime in Australia, plus preview screenings in territories like the U.K. and Italy, “Thor” has tallied so far a projected $23 million internationally, as the film looks forward to an expansive debut this weekend in a total 56 territories.

Beginning Wednesday in France, “Thor” collected there $1.6 million during opening day and continued on to Thursday bows in territories such as Germany and Russia, where the film took in $1.2 million and $1 million, respectively. In Blighty, “Thor” has earned $3.9 million from two days of release, including previews.

Par went early with “Thor” overseas, much like it did with last year’s “Iron Man 2,” to give the comic book tentpole a week of added playtime before Disney launches worldwide “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” the weekend of May 20. “Thor” also will benefit from public holidays on Monday in several markets.

“Thor” launches Stateside next weekend.

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