by Amie Cranswick
The Fast & Furious franchise branched out from the main series for the first time this weekend with the release of Hobbs & Shaw, and if the box office numbers are any indication, this likely won’t be the last we see of the ‘Fast & Furious Presents’ banner.
The Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham-headlined spinoff movie claimed top spot domestically with $60 million (right in the middle of the $55 million to $65 million tracking estimates), while the franchise’s overseas success continued with $120 million from 63 international markets (not including China) for a global opening weekend of $180 million.
That gives Hobbs & Shaw the third biggest global opening of the franchise to date – although it’s some way off The Fate of the Furious ($541 million) and Furious 7 ($398 million) – and Universal’s fifth biggest opening of all time behind the aforementioned F&F movies, Jurassic World ($525 million) and Fifty Shades of Grey ($242 million).
Given its opening numbers, analysts are projecting a total box office of around $450 million outside of China for Hobbs & Shaw which should just about see it in the black given its $200 million production budget (and additional marketing costs). However, that doesn’t take into account the Middle Kingdom; it opens in the lucrative Chinese market on August 23rd – a territory where Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham are both big draws, and the last two F&F movies managed almost $400 million apiece.
Ever since hulking lawman Hobbs (Johnson), a loyal agent of America’s Diplomatic Security Service, and lawless outcast Shaw (Statham), a former British military elite operative, first faced off in 2015’s Furious 7, the duo have swapped smack talk and body blows as they’ve tried to take each other down.
But when cyber-genetically enhanced anarchist Brixton (Idris Elba) gains control of an insidious bio-threat that could alter humanity forever — and bests a brilliant and fearless rogue MI6 agent (The Crown’s Vanessa Kirby), who just happens to be Shaw’s sister — these two sworn enemies will have to partner up to bring down the only guy who might be badder than themselves.
Hobbs & Shaw blasts open a new door in the Fast universe as it hurtles action across the globe, from Los Angeles to London and from the toxic wasteland of Chernobyl to the lush beauty of Samoa.
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw is being directed by David Leitch (John Wick, Deadpool 2) and will see the return of Dwayne Johnson (Luke Hobbs), Jason Statham (Deckard Shaw) and Helen Mirren (Magdalene Shaw) alongside franchise newcomers Idris Elba (Luther), Vanessa Kirby (Mission: Impossible – Fallout), Eddie Marsan (Ray Donovan), and Eiza Gonzalez (Baby Driver).
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