That’s significantly above the first tracking on Jan. 25 for the tentpole, which initially placed the debut in the $100 million-$120 million range for the Feb. 16-19 period. The range is higher even than tracking estimates earlier this week showing the film would make as much as $170 million.
“Black Panther” should easily break the Presidents Day weekend record of $152 million, set in 2016 by “Deadpool.” The second-highest debut for the four-day holiday was for “Fifty Shades of Grey,” which opened in 2015 to $93 million.
The latest Marvel entry dominated in Thursday preview showings, earning a muscular $25.2 million. The Thursday opening numbers represent a new high-water mark for the month of February. They are roughly double the previous record of $12.7 million, which was set by “Deadpool.