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‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ looks to edge past $ 100 m for holiday weekend

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LOS ANGELES (Variety.com): Estimates for ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ are continuing to fly low.

Disney and Lucasfilm’s ‘Star Wars’ prequel is now looking to make $101 million in North America during its four-day holiday weekend debut. The Han Solo origin film’s three-day estimate currently hovers around $83 million.

Tracking earlier this week suggested ‘Solo’ would lift off with $130 million to $150 million. The film, directed by Ron Howard, follows Alden Ehrenreich as a young Han Solo, who befriends his future co-pilot and Wookie companion Chewbacca, and meets the notorious gambler Lando Calrissian (Donald Glover). Emilia Clarke, Woody Harrelson, Thandie Newton, Paul Bettany, Joonas Suotamo, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge round out the cast.

“There’s a ton of momentum in the box office,” Dave Hollis, President of domestic distribution at Disney, said of the trio of recent openings — ‘Solo,’ ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ and ‘Deadpool 2’. “There’s a wide open landscape for the next handful of weeks.” 

Early estimates predicted ‘Solo’ could secure the best Memorial Day weekend opening, but it looks like ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End’ will continue to hold the crown with its $139.8 million in 2007.

‘Solo,’ the second standalone ‘Star Wars’ anthology film, has fallen far behind 2016’s ‘Rogue One,’ which landed a three-day weekend opening of $155 million. The most recent installment in the franchise — ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ — opened less than six months ago. The second film in the ‘Star Wars’ sequel trilogy debuted with $220 million domestically.

With ‘Solo’ as the only new release of the weekend, the rest of the North American box office will be bolstered by a number of holdovers.

‘Deadpool 2’ should easily score the second slot, heading for a $42 million three-day sophomore frame and a four-day total of around $54 million. As of Friday, the superhero sequel starring Ryan Reynolds has earned $176.8 million.

The fifth weekend of ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ looks to land in third. The Marvel blockbuster is looking at a $16.9 million three-day estimate, along with a four-day number of $22.1 million.

In fourth should be Paramount’s ‘Book Club’. The romantic comedy is aiming for $9.6 million in its second weekend. If it’s four-day cume reaches $12.3 million, that would put the domestic tally of ‘Book Club’ at $34.5 million. ‘Life of the Party’ should round out the top five with around $5 million in its third frame.

‘Solo’ still boosts the domestic box office 23.1% compared to Memorial Day weekend in 2017, according to comScore. Meanwhile, the year-to-date box office continues its positive trajectory with 7.6%.

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