‘All Eyez on Me’ Races Past ‘Cars 3’ at Thursday Box Office With $3.1 Million

Disney/Pixar sequel speeds to $2.8 million on preview night

Lionsgate/Summit’s “All Eyez On Me” won Thursday night previews with $3.1 million, playing on over 2,000 screens.

The studio is projecting an opening of $20 million, with trackers setting an opening weekend range of $17-22 million. “All Eyez on Me” has done well with advance ticket sales, currently ranking second on Fandango, but the film will have to fight against negative reviews that have given it a 27 percent RT score.

Directed by Benny Boom and produced by Lionsgate’s Codeblack Films and Morgan Creek Productions, “All Eyez on Me” stars Demetrius Shipp, Jr. as the famed rapper Tupac Shakur and follows his rise to stardom. Jeremy Haft, Eddie Gonzalez and Steven Bagatourian share writing credit, with David Robinson, L.T. Hutton, and James G. Robinson producing.

Disney/Pixar’s “Cars 3” crossed the starting line at the box office yesterday with $2.8 million. Compared to previous Pixar films, this start puts the film alongside Pixar’s 2013 offering “Monsters University,” which made $2.6 million from previews.

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Trackers are projecting an opening weekend for “Cars 3” somewhere between$56-66 million, with Disney expecting the film to match the first “Cars”‘ opening of $60 million. The film has done better with critics than “Cars 2,” scoring 62 percent on Rotten Tomatoes compared to 39 percent for its 2011 predecessor.

“Cars 3” follows Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) in the twilight of his racing career as he is eclipsed by a new generation of racers led by high-tech rookie Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer). After a crash puts his career in doubt, Lightning decides to make a comeback with the help of his racing team’s new trainer, Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo). Brian Fee directed the film screenplay by Bob Peterson, Kiel Murray and Mike Rich. Fee, Ben Queen, Eyal Powell and Jonathan E. Stewart are producing.

Also premiering this weekend is Columbia Pictures’ “Rough Night,” which made $700,000 from 2,503 preview screens. That puts the film on track to hit its pre-weekend target of a low teens opening. The film has received mixed reviews, scoring 50 percent on RT.

“Rough Night” stars Scarlett Johansson, Kate McKinnon, Jillian Bell, Ilana Glazer, and Zoë Kravitz as five college friends who reunite for a bachelorette party that goes horribly wrong when they accidentally kill a male stripper. Lucia Aniello directed the film and co-wrote it with Paul W. Downs. Both are producing with Dave Becky and Matt Tolmach.