‘Ready Player One’ to Storm Domestic Box Office With $53 Million

The VR-fantasy film starring Tye Sheridan launched a day early on Thursday after Warner Bros. decided to move up the release to take advantage of the vacation-friendly Easter holiday. With the added day, “Ready Player One” will come out more than $30 million ahead of the No. 2 film, “Tyler Perry’s Acrimony,” which is set to reel in roughly $16 million from 2,006 sites.

“Ready Player One” grossed $17 million on Friday, ahead of early forecasts, which had pegged the pic at around $38 million to $42 million for the Thursday through Sunday period. The film also opened day and date in 62 international markets, and earned roughly $28 million Friday for a foreign total of $42 million. In China, “Ready Player One” debuted at No. 1 with $14 million on Friday for a 60% box office share, marking the third-highest Chinese debut for a Warner Bros. film. Estimates for Saturday place the film’s take from China alone at $25.2 million.

Based on Ernest Cline’s 2011 novel, “Ready Player One” is set both in a dystopian version of Columbus, Ohio in 2045 and in an elaborate virtual reality world called Oasis, popular because it enables residents to escape the grim reality of their actual world. The film, written by Cline and Zak Penn, also stars Olivia Cooke, Lena Waithe, Ben Mendelsohn, T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg, and Mark Rylance. The sci-fi movie is sitting at a 76% certified fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and has received a A- CinemaScore.

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