"The Amazing Spider-Man 2" -- the fifth flick featuring the web-slinging hero in 14 years -- is spinning toward a strong opening weekend.
The sequel to 2012's franchise reboot "The Amazing Spider-Man" snatched $8.7 million in ticket sales from Thursday night showings in the U.S., according to its distributor, Sony Pictures Entertainment.
The movie -- starring Andrew Garfield as Spidey and Emma Stone as love interest Gwen Stacy and directed by Marc Webb -- is expected to gross $95 million or more domestically through Sunday.
An $8.7-million Thursday night puts "Spider-Man" a bit behind the most recent superhero blockbuster, Marvel Studios' "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," which grossed $10.2 million from Thursday night showings on its way to a $95-million opening weekend, the biggest debut of the year so far. Late shows for "Winter Soldier" probably benefitted from much of its young-male-skewing audience being on spring break.
The first "Amazing Spider-Man," which also starred Garfield and Stone, and the Sam Raimi-directed "Spider-Man 3" from 2007, starring Tobey Maguire, both opened to $7.5 million on their respective late-night preview kickoffs.
"The Amazing Spider-Man" opened wide on the Tuesday of a July 4 weekend and went on to gross $137 million in its first six days in U.S. release. "Spider-Man 3" opened with $151 million in its first three days.