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Box Office: ‘Justice League’ Soars to $13 Million on Thursday Night

Warner Bros.-DC’s “Justice League” has opened with a solid, but not spectacular $13 million at around 3,700 North American locations on Thursday night.

The number for “Justice League” is the fifth-biggest Thursday preview of 2017, following “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” and “Thor: Ragnarok.” “Justice League” tied “It’s” Thursday preview gross. The figure is also $2 million more than “Wonder Woman’s” Thursday night number in June.

“Justice League” expands to 4,051 domestic sites on Friday. It has remained on track for an opening weekend of $110 million since late October. Stakes are high for Warner Bros., which hasn’t revealed the cost of “Justice League” — estimated to be as much as $300 million. The movie is the fifth installment of its DC Extended Universe, aimed at duplicating the success of Disney-Marvel’s interconnected franchises.

Gal Gadot stars as Wonder Woman along with Ben Affleck as Batman, Henry Cavill as Superman, Jason Momoa as Aquaman, Ezra Miller as the Flash, and Ray Fisher as Cyborg. Amy Adams, Amber Heard, Jeremy Irons, J.K. Simmons, and Willem Dafoe also appear. Zack Snyder began shooting “Justice League” in April of 2016, from a script by Chris Terrio. Joss Whedon — director of Disney-Marvel’s two “Avengers” movies — assumed directing duties following the tragic suicide of Snyder’s daughter in March.

Reviewers have not been impressed with “Justice League,” which carries a 38% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Its opening comes two weeks after Disney-Marvel’s “Thor: Ragnarok” debuted with$14.5 million in Thursday night previews, then finished above forecasts with a $122.7 million opening weekend in what was the fourth-biggest launch of the year after “Beauty and the Beast,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” and “It.”

“Justice League” is also launching in 47 international markets this weekend and took in $8.5 million in its first nine territories.

The “Justice League” story follows up on the events in 2016’s “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” as Batman and Wonder Woman assemble a team to defeat the villain Steppenwolf, played by Ciaran Hinds.

“Superheroes are quickly making this a November to remember with the industry on the precipice of another $100 million North American debut from the genre, as ‘Justice League’ — just two weeks after the stellar opening of ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ — enjoys a solid start in Thursday pre-shows with a massive domestic and global debut in the cards for the latest film from Warner Bros.’ all-important DC Comics Universe,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at comScore. “By virtue of its ensemble cast and irresistible concept, the film has become a moviegoing event and thus a must-see trip to the multiplex for film fans and comic book aficionados alike around the world.”

Lionsgate is opening family drama “Wonder” at 3,096 sites this weekend amid expectations for a $9 million launch. The film, starring Jacob Tremblay as a fifth-grader with a facial deformity, took in $740,000 at over 2,400 preview locations on Thursday night.

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