‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ box office: Marvel sequel projected to open with $140-160 million weekend

“Guardians of the Galaxy” exceeded expectations when it was released in August 2014, earning $333 million at the domestic box office and $774 million worldwide. That success has in turn raised expectations for its sequel, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” which opens on May 5. Our sister site Deadline is reporting box office projections in the range of $140-160 million.

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That’s significantly higher than the $94 million opening weekend for the original film — 50-70% higher to be exact. But even though those numbers are huge, it would still fall short of the opening weekend record for May. In fact, even if it reaches the high end of that projection ($160 million), that would place it fifth among all-time May openings. The top four are — you guessed it — other Marvel movies: “The Avengers” ($207 million in 2012), “Avengers: Age of Ultron” ($191 million in 2015), “Captain America: Civil War” ($179 million in 2016) and “Iron Man 3” ($174 million in 2013).

In terms of the all-time biggest opening weekends, $160 million would place “Guardians” near “The Dark Knight Rises,” which ranks 10th with $160.9 million grossed in its first three days. The record is currently held by “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” (2015) with an astronomical $247 million opening. To think, just 15 years ago opening weekends over $100 million were literally unheard of. The first film to cross that threshold was “Spider-Man,” which made $114 million when it debuted in 2002 — now “Spider-Man” ranks 31st.

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“Guardians Vol. 2” follows the continued adventures of Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) and his rag-tag group of heroic intergalactic outlaws as Peter searches for the truth of his own parentage. Writer-director James Gunn is once again at the helm with co-stars Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel also returning.

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