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‘Ghostbusters’ Points Proton Packs at $50 Million Opening

Sony’s female-led reboot will have trouble topping ”The Secret Life of Pets“ for No. 1

Sony’s gal-starring “Ghostbusters” reboot has the internet abuzz and critics talking, which should translate into a solid opening weekend that could reach up to $50 million for the sci-fi action comedy.

But since people are loving Universal-Illumination’s “The Secret Life of Pets,” which is expected to come in at around $55 million in its second weekend, “Ghostbusters” has no easy road to the No. 1 spot.

What the Paul Feig-directed movie will have an easier time achieving is the status of highest grossing live-action comedy in more than a year — positioned to easily top the $33.5 million opening by Universal’s “Ted 2” June of last year.

Even if “Ghostbusters” surpasses conservative forecasts of more than $38 million, the reboot will easily crack the top five sci-fi comedy openings of all time, likely to surpass Universal’s “Nutty Professor II,” which opened at $42.5 million in 2000, for the No. 4 spot.

Made on a production budget of $144 million and set to play on 3,950 screens, “Ghostbusters” does have some work ahead to justify the price tag and could benefit from a boost in additional international ticket sales.

Featuring Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones, Kristen Wiig and Kate McKinnon as the lead Ghostbusters tackling a whole new haunting in New York City, the film has received solid reviews, with a current Rotten Tomatoes score of 77 percent.

The reboot could also eventually unseat the 1984 “Ghostbusters” as the highest grossing horror comedy of all time. The 32-year-old movie, starring Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson and Sigourney Weaver, made $242.2 million in lifetime grosses domestically and more than $295 million worldwide.

Also out this week is R-rated drug cartel drama “The Infiltrator,” starring Oscar winner Bryan Cranston.

Coming out of Broad Green Pictures, the film opens on Wednesday on 1600 screens. It has a decent 68 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes and is expected to surpass $6 million during its five-day opening.