Fate Of The Furious set to eclipse box office record with dramatic debut
The film is set to be a record-breaker.
Actor Vin Diesel has said he feels “humbled and blessed”, as his latest The Fast And The Furious film is on course to become the biggest worldwide debut of all time.
The Fate Of The Furious, the eighth instalment in the high-octane franchise, looks set to beat both Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Jurassic World.
Universal Pictures has estimated the film will earn a record 532.5 million US dollars (£425.2 million) worldwide over the holiday weekend, thanks to a particularly robust showing in 63 territories including China.
If the figures hold, the film will just inch past the previous record holder, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which launched to 529 million dollars (£422.4 million) in December 2015, without China.
The film broke the record for biggest international weekend ever, with 432.3 million dollars (£345.2 million), beating the previous record holder Jurassic World, which made 316.7 million dollars (£252.9 million).
Star Diesel, who plays Dominic “Dom” Toretto in the series, posted a message to his 36.2 million followers on Instagram, which said: “Grateful, humbled and blessed. #FastFriday.”
His co-star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson wrote on Instagram: “Takin’ a quick break between our Saturday sweat sets.
“My phone’s blowing up and apparently, #FateOfTheFurious is the biggest global box office opening of all time.
“It’s not official yet, but the moment it becomes gospel I’ll let you know.”
Duncan Clark, Universal’s president of international distribution, said of the film: “There is no market that hasn’t had a strong reception.
“Whatever culture, whatever language, whatever country, we seem to have found a home.”
The China opening alone brought in a record 190 million dollars (£151.7 million).
An estimated 100.2 million dollars (£80.1 million) of the global total comes from 4,310 North American cinemas, a second best for the franchise and enough to easily top the US charts, but well below the 147.2 million dollars (£117.5 million) opening of Furious 7 in 2015.
There was additional interest in Furious 7 due to the death of actor Paul Walker, who played cop turned street racer Brian O’Conner, a lead character in six of the films.
He died in a car crash in 2013 while the film was still in production.
Universal Pictures is planning two more movies in the franchise, which has earned an estimated 4.4 billion dollars (£3.5 billion) globally.