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‘Gravity’ Blasting Off for $50 Million Weekend

3D space drama likely to become Sandra Bullock's best debut ever

It took director Alfonso Cuaron and Warner Bros. nearly five years to finish “Gravity,” but the long wait is paying off in a big way for the studio.

According to early ticket sales, the 3D space drama is on pace for nearly $50 million this weekend, which would make it the highest-opening film of Sandra Bullock’s career.

“I didn’t know how they were going to pull it off,” Bullock recently told Variety of the production. “Every day I was pushed against a wall with technology.”

Co-starring George Clooney, “Gravity” tells the story of a medical engineer (Bullock) and an astronaut (Clooney) who work together to survive after an accident leaves them adrift in space.

One of the best reviewed films of the year, “Gravity” is also benefiting from premium 3D and Imax prices. Fandango reported on Thursday 3D pre-sales for “Gravity” were outpacing record-holder “Avatar” with 91% of tickets sold in the format.

Additionally, the sci-fi drama earned $3.4 million worldwide Thursday, including $1.4 million from latenight shows in the U.S.

Even the U.S.’s biggest space competitor, Russia, was falling for the Bullock feature with an outstanding $1.2 million Thursday as “Gravity” became the No. 1 film in the region.

“This movie could be around for a while,” one analyst remarked on Friday.

Co-written by Cuaron and his son Jonas, “Gravity” is vying to become the largest October opener of all-time. “Paranormal Activity 3″ currently holds the record for the largest launch during this month with $52 million.

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