Though on par with the franchise's other Thursday night openings --
The film is up against buddy comedy "Let's Be Cops," dystopian adventure "The Giver" and franchise "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles," which is beginning its second weekend.
Of these, the "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" remake is expected to keep its No. 1 spot, according to those who have seen pre-release audience surveys.
The Patrick Hughes-directed "The Expendables 3," distributed by Lionsgate, stars Stallone,
The well-received second installment opened with $28.8 million in August 2012, knocking out competition in the box office. The movie topped out at $85 million in North America but did far better overseas, where it collected 72% of its $305 million global tally.
As of Friday, the film had received a 36% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and 53% of audiences said they liked it.
The studio expects it to gross between $20 million to $25 million in its opening weekend in the U.S. and Canada.