“So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past,” F. Scott Fitzgerald famously wrote in “The Great Gatsby,” a melancholy observation on the struggle to transform one’s dreams into future glory.
Against the box-office current facing Baz Luhrmann’s “Great Gatsby” adaptation in its opening weekend in theaters, the bedazzled 3-D drama got off to an auspicious start, hauling in a robust $3.25 million Thursday night in its 10 p.m. debut at approximately 2,500 locations.
Competing against newly minted international blockbuster “Iron Man 3,” which is expected to continue its box-office supremacy in its second week of release this weekend, pre-release tracking estimates indicate that “Gatsby” could open to an impressive $45 million.
That figure is even more impressive considering it’s one of the few movies targeted at women in a summer season heaving with bombastic fanboy fare featuring gunfights, car chases and alien invasions.
As of Friday morning, “Gatsby” had already outperformed other female-oriented films, such as “Sex and the City” (which hauled in just $2.5 million in its late-show opening night debut) and its 2010 sequel, which took $3 million during the same period.
“The Great Gatsby” is to expand to 3,535 locations through the weekend before going on to screen at the Cannes Film Festival on May 15 -- a precedent-setting inversion of the festival-premiere-to-theatrical-release model.