‘Bullet Train’ Pulls Into Station With $4.6 Million at Thursday Box Office

Columbia Pictures’ action film starring Brad Pitt is projected for a $30 million opening weekend

"Bullet Train" (Columbia Pictures)

“Bullet Train,” Columbia Pictures’ R-rated action film starring Brad Pitt, made $4.6 million at the box office in its Thursday preview screenings, which began at 3 p.m. from 3,595 locations. It opens wide on over 4,300 screens this weekend.

“Bullet Train” may be the last major release of the summer in what will become a relatively quiet period at the box office after it opens, and Sony is in some ways counting on the fact that it will allow the film to leg out beyond its opening weekend. The studio is projecting a $30 million start for the film against a $90 million budget.

For some comparisons, “Free Guy” with Ryan Reynolds opened last August and made $28.4 million in its opening after first bringing in $2.2 million at the Thursday box office. And the R-rated superhero movie “The Suicide Squad” made $26.5 million in its opening after starting with $4.1 million in its Thursday previews, though that film also opened at the same time on HBO Max.

“Bullet Train” stars Brad Pitt as Ladybug, an unlucky assassin determined to do his job peacefully after one too many gigs gone off the rails. Fate, however, may have other plans, as Ladybug’s latest mission puts him on a collision course with lethal adversaries from around the globe—all with connected, yet conflicting, objectives—on the world’s fastest train.

David Leitch, who directed “Deadpool 2,” directs the stylish and silly action movie and brings along an impressive cast that includes Joey King, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Brian Tyree Henry, Andrew Koji, Hiroyuki Sanada, Michael Shannon, Benito A Martínez Ocasio and Sandra Bullock.

The film has a screenplay by Zak Olkewicz and is based on the book by Kotaro Isaka. Kelly McCormick, David Leitch and Antoine Fuqua produced “Bullet Train,” and the executive producers are Brent O’Connor, Ryosuke Saegusa, Yuma Terada and Kat Samick.