After a disastrous weekend a week ago with The Golden Compass falling hard and fast, the box office has been revitalized by I Am Legend. The Will Smith-starring sci-fi flick opened to a huge $29.7 million on Friday alone, which means that the movie is destined to make between $70 and $80 million over the three day weekend.
This is the injection the box office so desperately needed, and once again cements Will Smith’s place at the top of box office leaders. With exception to a few stumbles (mostly dramas), Smith can open movies big, and I Am Legend is his biggest yet. Not only does I Am Legend‘s opening beat the $62 million summer opening of Smith’s I, Robot, but it will likely surpass the number one December opening previously held by The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King‘s $72 million. Amazing!
I Am Legend opened on 3,606 theaters. In comparison, The Golden Compass – in its second weekend – earned only $2.6 million on Friday from almost as many theaters.