Is it all just hype or does Iran Man 2 stand a real chance of setting a new box-office record this weekend? Several box-office experts insist that the movie does have a shot at unseating the current record holder, The Dark Knight, which debuted with $158.4 million two years ago. Veteran box-office tracker Ben Fritz, who now writes for the Los Angeles Times , said in an article today that "ticket sales of at least $140 million seem assured." Daily Variety' s Andrew Stewart wrote, "While some insiders say Iron 2 could come close to the record, most studio observers are expecting pic to open in the $125-135 million range." But the New York Post 's Lou Lumenick remarked that "those are most likely lowball numbers from distributor Paramount, which naturally wants IM2 to look like it way exceeded expectations." Industry box-office tracker Exhibitor Relations is predicting that the film will earn about $150 million. But Forbes magazine observed, "This film is such a juggernaut that it could do even better." Moreover, it added, "If the film does as well as projected, it could mark the early highlight of what looks to be a lucrative summer season." At its midnight screenings last night, Iron Man 2 racked up $7.5 million from around 2,500 theaters, a figure that falls far short of setting a record for such previews.

07/05/2010