‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Orbits $100 Million at Box Office

Guardians of the Galaxy

The opening day of Marvel-Disney’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” has demolished forecasts — so much so that it may reach the iconic $100 million mark in its first weekend.

Late Friday afternoon estimates placed the new superhero tentpole’s debut at approximately $95 million, the best ever for the month of August, with Friday estimates ranging from $33 million to $40 million.

“Guardians” had originally been pegged to open in the $70 million range.

Disney downplayed its estimates Friday afternoon with a range of $85 million to $95 million but if the intergalactic pic can hit the nine-figure mark, it would be only the second time in 2014 following Paramount’s “Transformers: Age of Extinction” doing so at the end of June. The $100 million mark has been crossed a total of 27 times.

Four other titles have opened above $90 million in 2014 — Marvel-Disney’s “Captain America: The Winter soldier” with $95 million, Warner-Legendary’s “Godzilla” with $93 million, Sony’s “Amazing Spider-Man 2” with $91.6 million and Fox’s “X-Men: Days of Future Past” with $90.8 million.

Directed by James Gunn, “Guardians” may serve to start lifting the overall box office out of a  year-to-year slump that has left the 2014 total an eye-opening 20% behind 2013’s take at the same point.

“Guardians” debuted to the highest Thursday opening of the year with $11.2 million and will demolish the record for top August debut, currently held by “The Bourne Ultimatum” at $69.3 million.

“Guardians” stars Pratt as the Star Lord along with Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Lee Pace and Bradley Cooper, who voices the wisecracking Rocket Racoon.

Universal Pictures’ James Brown biopic “Get on Up” was heading for a $5.5 million Friday and a $16 million opening weekend. Universal’s second weekend of “Lucy” looked likely to finish second with about $19 million, declining 57% from its surprisingly strong opening. Friday estimates placed the Scarlett Johannson actioner at $5.7 million.

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  1. Jay Johnson says:

    The only thing that I can say is that this movie is worth every penny to see it in the theater. It is a perfect blend of great action, great comedy, great story, and great stars! I don’t think that I have anything bad to say about it. It is a movie theater must see. Even if you aren’t a comic book fan, this is a movie all can appreciate. I say well done to cast, crew, and studio for giving such a great piece of entertainment!!

  2. charitable1 says:

    Nice! Great movie that deserves the success. But it’s not “the” Star-Lord. It’s just Star-Lord!

  3. Let’s hope Guardians gets over $100 million by the weekend’s end. The only way to do it now is for Guardians’ Saturday and Sunday grosses to be $37.2 – $38 million today and $25.5-$30 million. So, c’mon guys. Don’t stop. KEEP GOING. KEEP SEEING GUARDIANS BEFORE ITS CHANCE TO REACH $100.5 MILLION IS TOO LATE. And if Guardians beats Transformers record for opening weekend record of 2014, here’s what I’m gonna say: MICHAEL BAY CAN SUCK IT!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Steve Dillard says:

    Why do they say a movie makes ???? amount of money when ticket prices are so much more than they were years ago, as in when Star Wars came out. I want to see the number of tickets sold. If you have 10 million people pay $10 per ticket, of course it’s $100Million. If you had 15 million people pay $3.00 for Star Wars, that’s $45Million. Of course you can say that movie made more money; but not really. In reality, minimum wage in 1977 was about $2.45 an hour. Minimum wage, now, is $7.25. 3D and Imax movies inflate the total earned even higher with lower ticket sales. It’s about $15.00 to see a 3D and Imax movie. Prices compared to minimum wage salary percentages of these years are much higher than they were back then, so it makes no sense how they can say that a movie made this or made that when the reality of it all should say how many ticket sales there were.

  5. Ivan says:

    I’ve seen it already it’s great. Going to see it again. Such a fantastic film. Please go see it. Absolutely fun entertainment with a heart.

  6. Paul lane says:

    A very good film, no strike that, a very good Movie. In every sense. A foreshadowing of Star Wars 7.. Hmm..

  7. LANDO'S SON says:

    Guardians of the Galaxy gave me the vibe of a 21st century mash-up of 80s sci-fi action adventures like The Last Starfighter and/or Ghostbusters. I thoroughly enjoyed this film and I will be seeing it again and by the way the 3D was excellent.

  8. Amen Chris! I’d give my right nut to be in a comic-book movie. They are modern day fables. Truly outstanding story telling. I love that they are being made with such love and respect. And with Guardians they are coming full circle. It’s delivering on the movie and it’s self-referential. Really awesome and so fucking smart. It’s why The Avengers was so good. It was aware of how contrived it was but also loved that it was a comic book movie. I am so pumped after these movies. The heroics, the humor, the life and death stakes. It’s what movies are all about.

  9. fatherBear says:

    All box office predictions ignored the Marvel audience follows the brand. Example: random sampling of big box stores offering preorder of blu-ray dvd are sold out of the prepaid GOTG voucher cards! Funny and lots of color, action, heart and pain make this resonate. Word of mouth will continue, as kids go back to camp Monday!

  10. Yes, Jim Henson about it not taking itself so seriously! That was the key. It was almost slapstick. Do you know how amazing that is for a movie I’m guessing cost over $80 MILLION to make to be this subversive? Whoever green-lit this deserves the butt-load of cash they are making right now. Smart fuckers is what they are.

  11. I’ll agree, DG, the trailer wasn’t very good. The marketing department and PR didn’t know what to do with this movie. Honestly, I don’t think they ‘got’ it. Bless someone in the studio who pays the bills who was smart enough to see how smart the team was with this one. It’s so subversive and smart. The humor is some of the most highbrow and broad and ‘fourth wall breaking’ I’ve seen in a studio film in a long time. I don’t want to tell you HOW the songs movie figures into the movie, but trust me, it’s a nice link. Actually, the link is the reason the movie works. It’s very emotional and starts the movie off with a super bang. Go_see_it. Smart, smart writing. So refreshing to see a true perspective in big budget and inspired movie making!

  12. Great film, but the box office failures that we’ve seen this year so far are largely in part because to terrible premises, actors we’ve seen a million times who have way outworn their welcome, and a demonstrated unwillingness on the studios to tell original stories that truly connect with the audience. Is every A-lister going to play a superhero or be part of a comic book universe at some point? Is that what we’re reducing our actors to?

    Guardians is doing well because it because it doesn’t take itself so gosh darn seriously as do the rest of the films in the Marvel Universe. And it’s not a sequel that has been shoehorned into a release schedule… oops… we’ve got to make another Iron Man! It’s time for another Thor! Don’t rush films out into the marketplace until you have a tight story. Spider-Man has been done to death. Who even knows or cares about the Sinister Six? The studios have got to either get a clue or buy one or they’re going to have far worse seasons than this one.

    • Chris says:

      When damn near every comic book movie is getting universal praise across the board, every actor is going to want to be apart of that success. There is nothing demeaning about being in a comic book movie anymore.

      • therealeverton says:

        Well said Chris. Sorry, but three of the best reviewed, most like and successful films of the year are Super hero films . Winter Soldier, Days of Future Past and #guardians have all done nearly identical business in openings and critical / audience praise…s not sure what you’re on about there ad the facts are very much against you too. *As well as the box office.)

        Amazing Spider-#Man isn’t poorly received (for a Spider-man) film because the character has been done to death (after 60 years you really think it can’t handle a massive 5 films?!) It’s because it’s an average film, following another average film, that generally people didn’t want instead f “another” in the original series instead. It isn’t that it has been done, it is that t has been done poorly. When your argument is that a character, Thor, has been overdone in his own films, when he has had two films, you need to find a stronger argument.

    • DG says:

      Couldn’t agree with you more!

  13. DG says:

    Well. Haven’t seen it yet, but I’m presuming it’s rather fresh, something new, and not a retread of earlier MARVEL material. Looking forward to it.

    What seemed incongruous to me was the use of “Hooked on a Feeling” in the trailer. Despite all the positive chatter its use was suppose to have generated, it just seemed to leave the audience confused at the trailer screening I saw with GODZILLA.

    Can anyone explain how that was supposed to connect to the material? I gotta be missing something, there.

    • emignatius says:

      SPOILERS!

      Peter Quill’s mother made him a mixtape of songs while he was a child and one of the songs were “Hooked on a Feeling”. He was then abducted by aliens on the night her mother died and all he has was his walkman with the mixtape and a gift from his mother that he didn’t open until the end of the film. So you should expect a lot of great old songs because the mixtape is one of the most valuable possession Peter has growing up and he likes to listen to it a lot.

      • DG says:

        Thanks. Just makes me want to see it even more now.

        I’m delighted this one is working out so well. Hope it has “legs” for the rest of the summer, in fact.

  14. Groot! The movie is fantastic. Funny, funny and funny with a big heart and action to boot. It’s the future of self-aware action movies. So glad everyone involved in the making of this are going to be filthy rich.

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