The Thursday night take was ahead of the $1 million for “Son of God,” which went on to an opening weekend of $25.6 million, Warner Bros.’ Gravity,” which took $1.4 million in late-nights.
The late-night number for “Noah” came in at about half of Warner’s “300: Rise of an Empire,” which took in $3.3 million at late-night shows on its way to a $45 million first weekend three weeks ago.
The film, with a price tag of $125 million, is aiming to appeal to moviegoers beyond faith-based markets. Forecasts range from $30 million to $40 million for the opening weekend at 3,500 U.S. locations.
Darren Aronofsky’s dark tale of the Old Testament, starring Russell Crowe, has already sailed away with $22 million in its first week from Australia, Mexico, Russia and South Korea, which leads with $10 million. It expands into 18 other international markets this weekend.
“Noah” opened impressively in Russia on Thursday with $2.75 million — the fourth highest non-holiday opening day in that market and 2.5 times the opening gross of “Gravity.”
Its opening day in Australia took more than 55% of the marketplace with $750,000, 20% above “Gravity.”
The film also stars Anthony Hopkins, Jennifer Connelly, Emma Watson, Ray Winstone, Logan Lerman and Douglas Booth.