The Deadpool movie is set to smash box office records over its opening weekend after it took a whopping $41.5 million on its opening day in the U.S., beating the previous records for both a February release and for an R-rated movie.
According to ScreenRant, the mammoth take for the movie is higher than last year’s Valentine phenomenon Fifty Shades of Grey, which itself smashed box office records with the biggest single day sales in February of $36.7 million, another record that the Merc-with-the-Mouth Deadpool has already broken.
After the higher than expected opening day take, Deadpool is now expected to rake in a staggering $102.5 million during its opening weekend which will comfortably beat the previous record for an R-rated movie, the $91.7 million domestic take for The Matrix: Reloaded, set way back in 2003.
To better put the amazing figures that 20th Century Fox are reporting into context, it is worth noting that the entire domestic movie take for the weekend of February 5-7 was $95,497,313 split between 95 movies. Deadpool is projected to beat this total by a significant margin, and the four-day weekend take is expected to top $115 million.
The tale of the tape gets even more remarkable. February is traditionally seen as a slow month for movie theaters, and R-rated movies also are traditionally slow performers due to the restricted audience, so beating these records may not seem that impressive, but when you consider that Deadpool is now in with a chance of becoming the most successful X Man movie in history, it is very impressive. X-men- The Last Stand, which grossed $234.3 million after an opening weekend that was comparable to Deadpool‘s, but the takings dropped significantly after the promising start.
With a budget of around $58 million, Deadpool will almost double this in the first weekend from the domestic take alone. It is set to be a massive financial success for 20th Century Fox, and this means it is certain that we will see future movies featuring the popular anti-hero. The NME reported that Ryan Reynolds, the actor behind the mask, would like to play the wisecracking merc for the rest of his life. The actor, who has also played comic book characters in The Green Lantern, RIPD and Blade: Trintiy stated, “I never want to play another comic book character again; Deadpool, I would like to play for the rest of my life – that’d be fun.”
Reynolds himself played a huge part in getting the movie made, reprising the role after an ill-fated appearance as an unrecognizable Deadpool in X-men Origins: Wolverine. A long-time admirer of the original comics, Reynolds is credited as an executive producer as well as playing the lead man. We can, perhaps, thank Reynolds for the movie keeping so true to the tone and spirit of the printed version of Deadpool. The titular title character charms us with his irreverent fourth wall breaking direct dialogue to the audience, while the humor is both graphic and cheeky, and the violence is necessarily gratuitous.
It is not just in the box office that Deadpool has been successful. Critics have been giving the movie largely positive reviews. It has a 84 percent rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes and an audience rating of 96 percent (correct at the time of writing). Reading through the professional critiques and the primary criticism seems to be it doesn’t take on the form and conventions of a movie, but of course the entire purpose of Deadpool is to play with conventions. Breaking the fourth wall was seen as a big no for a graphic novel and the Merc-with-the Mouth proved it can be done, and judging by the audience satisfaction levels, Deadpool has done the same again for the superhero movie genre.
A big well done to director Tim Miller and Ryan Reynolds on bringing us the Deadpool movie the fans wanted. We are already eagerly awaiting the sequel.
[photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images]