Universal Pictures rolled out the highly-anticipated Jurassic World in Thursday preview screenings last night, where the dinosaur adventure took in an estimated $18.5 million at the box office. The tally is not a Thursday record, by any means, with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 holding that distinction with a whopping $43.5 million from its Thursday shows back in 2011. Jurassic World's Thursday haul tied 2008's The Dark Knight for 13th best all-time.
Jurassic World's Thursday gross was better than this spring's Furious 7, which earned $15.8 million in preview screenings ahead of its $147.5 million opening weekend. It did fall short of this year's current box office champ, though, Avengers: Age of Ultron, which took in $27.6 million on Thursday before its first weekend tally of $191.3 million. Jurassic World is on pace to break the all-time June opening weekend record of $116.6 million, currently held by 2013's Man of Steel. After opening in 3,229 theaters last night, Jurassic World expands to 4,273 screens, Universal's widest release ever and the 14th largest debut ever, just three theaters behind Avengers: Age of Ultron.
The dinosaur adventure, starring Chris Pratt, Ty Simpkins, Ty Simpkins, Nick Robinson, Irrfan Khan, Jake Johnson, Omar Sy and B.D. Wong, also took in $2.8 million in IMAX preview screenings, which is second best all time, just behind Avengers: Age of Ultron's $2.9 million. Jurassic World is expected to take in anywhere between $115 million and $135 million over its first three days in theaters, so check back on Sunday for the full box office estimates. How much do you think Jurassic World will make in its opening weekend?