Thanks to a strong showing during Thursday night previews, analysts are already predicting that Godzilla may enjoy a far more successful opening weekend than originally predicted.
The highly-anticipated disaster film pulled in a reported $9.3 million last night alone.
For comparison, the most recent installment in the Hobbit franchise – The Desolation of Smaug – pulled in about $8.8 million on its first Thursday and went on to gross $73.6 million on its opening weekend.
The numbers for Godzilla are better than most projections, and experts are now saying the film could go on to beat Captain America: The Winter Soldier and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 to earn the prize of top weekend box office for 2014.
Since those movies each went on to gross more than $90 million on their opening weekend, knocking them about the top spot would be no mean feat for the giant lizard.
Even more encouraging than the early box office receipts is the fact that Godzilla received positive reviews from critics and is likely to benefit from strong word of mouth.
Of course, in terms of tickets sold worldwide none of the above-mentioned films can compete with The Avengers. That superhero behemoth steam-rolled its way to a cool $207 million on its opening weekend and The Avengers 2 is likely to leave its predecessor in the dust.
Still, not bad for a radioactive dinosaur who first hit theaters in 1954.
Of course, the lovable lizard has gone through many different styles over the years. Be sure to vote on Godzilla’s best look from his many years on the silver screen.