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Box Office: ‘Suicide Squad’ Outpaces ‘Deadpool,’ ‘Guardians’ Overseas, Opens to $8.1 Million

SUICIDE SQUAD
Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Suicide Squad” is battling bad buzz and even worse reviews, but so far the frosty word-of-mouth doesn’t appear to be taking a bite out of the box office.

The comic book film pulled in a healthy $8.1 million from seven international markets, including a hefty $2.9 million in its opening day in South Korea and a sizable $2.7 million from its launch in France. The results outpace other hits such as “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Deadpool.”

“Suicide Squad” is expected to open to more than $100 million overseas this weekend when it rolls out across 57 markets, including such major territories as the U.K. and Mexico. The film opens Thursday in Russia, Australia, and Brazil. Domestically, “Suicide Squad” is on track to open to more than $125 million, setting a new record for an August debut.

The film is directed by David Ayer and stars Margot Robbie, Will Smith, and Jared Leto as supervillains who are enlisted by the U.S. government to undertake covert operations. Warner Bros. spent $175 million making the movie, and is shelling out millions more to promote and distribute the pic.

But stories have already been bubbling up about how troubled production on the film was and how its dark tone alarmed Warner executives. The studio has ambitions to create an interlocking cinematic universe filled with superheroes that is akin to what Disney has achieved with Marvel. However, last spring’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” was something of a disappointment. It was excoriated by critics and failed to pass $1 billion worldwide, a benchmark that signals true blockbuster-hood.

Reviewers haven’t been much kinder to “Suicide Squad,” with critics decrying it for having too many characters and an implausible script. It currently has a lowly 29% “rotten” ranking on Rotten Tomatoes. Despite the poor notices, tracking for the film has actually improved in recent days, signaling that audience interest remains high.

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