"San Andreas" rumbled to a $54.6-million debut in the U.S. and Canada, according to final studio estimates released on Monday.
Going into the weekend, the earthquake disaster film was tracking to make about $40 million. Warner Bros., which released the film, estimated on Sunday that it would pull in $53.2 million over the weekend. However, positive word-of-mouth, reflected in a strong grade of A-minus from audience polling firm CinemaScore, helped the film exceed expectations.
The earthquake movie, co-produced by Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow Pictures at a cost of $110 million, stars Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson as a helicopter pilot who is searching for his daughter during a massive earthquake.
"San Andreas" marks Johnson's highest-grossing opening as a solo lead. Last week, hundreds of people lined up on Hollywood Boulevard to see the star at the premiere, where he rolled up in a fire truck. The actor has a whopping 8.7 million followers on Twitter.
“Whenever you exceed expectations in this world, you have to feel good about it," Dan Fellman, Warner Bros. president of domestic distribution, told The Times on Sunday. "This movie is going to have some strong legs.”
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