Early B.O.: ‘MIB’ in $80 mil range; ‘Avengers’ strong

Return of Will Smith also netting $240 mil worldwide

“Men in Black 3” is suiting up for $80 million domestic and an impressive $240 million worldwide at the Memorial Day weekend box office, easily dethroning “The Avengers” — though the Marvel meet-up will still haul in a whopping $50 million Stateside in its fourth frame, according to early Friday estimates.

The return of Will Smith to the bigscreen after a four-year hiatus (which reportedly cost $230 million but has been rumored higher) is on track for $19.5 million Friday — but “Men in Black” could see an uptick in evening auds, according to B.O. analysts.

Marking the franchises’s first film in nearly a decade, Sony’s 3D tenpole reunites helmer Barry Sonnenfeld, Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. Josh Brolin co-stars in the threequel.

“The Avengers,” meanwhile, has already amassed $1.2 billion worldwide and should cross $500 million domestically by Sunday. It’s well on its way to topping “The Dark Knight” ($533 million) as the third-highest grossing film in U.S. history.

This weekend’s other wide release, Warner Bros.’ low-budget horror pic “Chernoble Diaries” should scare up $10 million.

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