“Straight Outta Compton” rapped its way to a solid $4.957 million in 2,264 theaters at the Thursday night box office, paving the way for a $40-$50 million opening weekend.
Universal and Legendary’s latest music biopic follows the rise of N.W.A, a groundbreaking “gangsta rap” group that changed American hip-hop culture with hits like “F–k Tha Police” and “Express Yourself.”
The movie directed by
F. Gary Gray stars O’Shea Jackson, Jr. as Ice Cube, Corey Hawkins as Dr. Dre, Jason Mitchell as Eazy E, Aldis Hodge as MC Ren and Neil Brown, Jr. as DJ Yella. Paul Giamatti plays Jerry Heller, the manager of the group. Also Read: Ice Cube Gets Real on Police Brutality, Black Lives Matter: 'I Tell My Kids to Make It Home'
Both Cube and Dre produced the film with Eazy-E’s widow Tomica Woods-Wright, Matt Alvarez, Gray and Scott Bernstein.
Will Packer serves as executive producer of the film alongside Adam Merims, David Engel, Bill Straus, and Legendary’s Thomas Tull and Jon Jashni. The budget was $29 million.
The other opener this weekend is Guy Ritchie’s “The Man From U.N.C.L.E,” which grossed $900,000 at the Thursday night box office. Warner Bros.’ spy action film, which stars
Henry Cavill (“Man of Steel”) alongside Armie Hammer (“The Lone Ranger”), is based on the 1960s TV show of the same name, and is tracking for a debut weekend in the high-teen millions.
The Warner Bros. film is about a CIA agent named Napoleon Solo who partners with KGB operative Illya Kuryakin to fight a mysterious criminal organization, which is working to proliferate nuclear weapons. Alicia Vikander is co-starring. Producers include Steve Clark-Hall, John David, Jeff Kleeman and Lionel Wigram.
Also Read: 'The Man from U.N.C.L.E.' Review: Henry Cavill, Armie Hammer Heat Up the Cold War in '60s Spy Reboot
“The Man From U.N.C.L.E” has received a majority of positive reviews, with a 66 percent approval rating from critics counted on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Straight Outta Compton,” on the other hand, boasts a strong 87 percent approval rating from critics, and is sizzling on social media, trending on both Facebook and Twitter this week. Marketing campaigns have been extremely prosperous for the studio although the film premiered in only Los Angeles. The “Straight Outta ?” meme went viral on social media — a savvy marketing ploy for the film.
There aren’t many films comparable to “Straight Outta Compton.” The 2009 Notorious B.I.G. biopic “Notorious” opened to $20 million, but dropped off the table soon after, topping out at $37 million for Fox Searchlight. “Eight Mile” was based on the rise of
Eminem and starred the Detroit rapper. It was a big hit for Universal in 2002, opening to $51 million and going on to gross $117 million domestically and $243 million worldwide. Ice Cube has had several box office hits, including “Barbershop” and 2014’s “Ride Along” with Kevin Hart.
Also Read: LA Police Beef Up Patrols Around Theaters Ahead of 'Straight Outta Compton' Debut
“Straight Outta Compton” doesn’t shy away from N.W.A’s penchant for confronting authority, particularly the FBI and the Los Angeles Police Department, which stepped up security for the film’s Hollywood premiere earlier this week.
Whether anxiety over potential trouble, combined with a recent spate of theater shootings, will keep some moviegoers at home remains to be seen, but most analysts expect otherwise.
42 Summer Movies on Our Radar: From 'Avengers,' 'Jurassic World' to 'Magic Mike XXL' (Photos)
"Avengers: Age of Ultron" - May 1The elite superhero team -- including Scarlett Johansson, Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth and Chris Evans -- assembles again in this follow up to the 2012 blockbuster.
"Welcome to Me" - May 1Kristen Wiig stars in this indie drama about a woman with borderline personality disorder who buys herself a cable access talk show after winning the lottery. Will Ferrell and Adam McKay produced.
"The D-Train" - May 8Jack Black plays the head of his high school reunion committee who must convince the most popular guy in his class (James Marsden) to attend the reunion in this Sundance pic.
"Maggie" - May 8Arnold Schwarzenegger stars in this indie as a father who stays with his daughter (Abigail Breslin) as she transforms into a zombie.
"Hot Pursuit" - May 8Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara star in this buddy comedy about a straight-laced cop (Witherspoon) tasked with escorting a witness (Vergara) to her trial
"The Connection" - May 15Oscar-winner Jean Dujardin stars in this French crime thriller as a real-life policeman who dedicates his career to taking down a drug lord (Gilles Lellouche)
"Mad Max: Fury Road" - May 15Tom Hardy takes over the role that made Mel Gibson an international star in this reboot from the madcap mind of George Miller
"Pitch Perfect 2" - May 15Anna Kendrick returns for the song-filled sequel to the 2012 musical smash hit.
"Poltergeist" - May 22Sam Rockwell leads a remake of the 1982 horror classic that was originally written by Steven Spielberg.
Twentieth Century Fox
"Tomorrowland" - May 22George Clooney and Britt Robertson star in a sci-fi fantasy about a man and woman who must discover the secrets of a strange land lost in time and space.
"Aloha" - May 29Cameron Crowe directs Bradley Cooper and Emma Stone in a romantic comedy about a military contractor overseeing a satellite launch in Hawaii.
Columbia Pictures/Twentieth Century Fox
"San Andreas" - May 29
Dwayne Johnson stars in a disaster movie about a chopper pilot who must rescue his daughter (Alexandra Daddario) after a massive earthquake strikes California.
"Entourage" - June 5Vince (Adrian Grenier) drives Ari (Jeremy Piven) up the wall when he decides to direct and star in his own movie in the big screen version of the HBO show.
"Spy" - June 5Melissa McCarthy co-wrote and stars in a comedy about a CIA analyst who gets her chance to work in the field when an arms dealer (Rose Byrne) threatens to destabilize the world.
Twentieth Century Fox
"Insidious Chapter 3" - June 5In this horror prequel, psychic Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) agrees to help teenager (Stefanie Scott) who is being targeted by a supernatural force.
"Jurassic World" - June 12Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas-Howard lead the latest installment in the Michael Crichton-inspired series. This time around, the park is terrorized by a genetically-engineered dinosaur that escapes its enclosure.
"Me and Earl and The Dying Girl" - June 12This 2015 Sundance Grand Jury winner follows an anti-social teen (Thomas Mann) who falls in love with a classmate (Olivia Cooke) who has leukemia.
"Dope" - June 19This Sundance breakout centers on a teen (Shameik Moore) trying to make his Ivy League dreams come true in his tough LA neighborhood.
Open Road Films
"Inside Out" - June 19Pixar takes us inside the mind of a little girl as her emotions vie for control. Amy Poehler, Mindy Kaling and Bill Hader all lend their voices.
"Ted 2" - June 26Seth MacFarlane's foul-mouthed teddy bear returns in the sequel that finds Ted (voiced by MacFarlane) and John (Mark Wahlberg) fighting in court to prove that Ted is human.
"Batkid Begins" June 26This feel-good documentary tells the story of a five-year-old leukemia patient who inspired people from all over the world to help him live out his dream of being Batman for a day.
"Max" - June 26A Marine-trained German shepherd is sent to live with the family of his former handler (Robbie Amell), who was killed in Afghanistan
"Big Game" - June 26A teenage-boy (Onni Tommila) rescues the President of the United States (Samuel L. Jackson) when Air Force One crash lands near his campsite.
"Magic Mike XXL" - July 1Channing Tatum gyrates his way into this sequel as stripper "Magic" Mike who decides to attend an annual stripper conference in Myrtle Beach.
"Terminator: Genisys" - July 1Arnold Schwarzenegger is back as the unstoppable android as he fights to protect Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke) with the help of Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney).
"Minions" - July 2The Minions are back in this "Despicable Me" spinoff. This time, they are recruited by a super-villainess (Sandra Bullock) in her plot to take over the world.
"The Bronze" - July 10"Big Bang Theory" star Melissa Rauch co-wrote and stars in this comedy about a former Olympic athlete clinging to her last shreds of fame.
"Self/Less" - July 10Ryan Reynolds stars in this thriller about a wealthy, dying man who pays to have his consciousness transferred into a younger body. When he begins to investigate where the body came from, he discovers a terrifying mystery
"Ant-Man" - July 17Paul Rudd leads this Marvel comic adaptation about a con man who is given a device that can shrink him in scale by Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas).
"Trainwreck" - July 17Amy Schumer and Bill Hader star in a Judd Apatow comedy about a magazine writer (Schumer) who refuses to commit, until her relationship with a doctor (Hader) challenges her notions of monogamy.
"Stanford Prison Experiment" - July 17Based on the infamous 1971 psychological experiment, 24 male students volunteer to play prisoners or guards in a mock-prison, only for things to spiral completely out of control.
"Paper Towns" - July 24Based on the novel by John Green, Nat Wolff plays a boy who convinces his friends to embark on a road trip to find the missing girl next door (Cara Delevingne).
Twentieth Century Fox
"Pixels" - July 24Adam Sandler leads a team of gamers (Kevin James, Josh Gad, Peter Dinklage) who must fight aliens that invade Earth in the form of classic video games.
"Southpaw" - July 24Jake Gyllenhaal packed on the muscle for this drama about a troubled boxer fighting to regain custody of his daughter. Antoine Fuqua directed based on a script by Kurt Sutter.
The Weinstein Company
"Irrational Man" - July 24Joaquin Phoenix and Emma Stone star in a Woody Allen film about a college philosophy professor (Phoenix) who enters into a relationship with his student (Stone).
"Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation" - July 31Tom Cruise once again does the impossible as he leads his team against an international syndicate intent on destroying the Impossible Mission Force.
"End of the Tour" - July 31Jesse Eisenberg stars as Rolling Stone journalist David Lipsky as he conducts a series of interviews with author David Foster Wallace (Jason Segel). The film is based on Lipsky's book, "Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself."
"Fantastic Four" - August 7Miles Teller (Mr. Fantastic), Michael B. Jordan (Human Torch), Kate Mara (Invisible Girl), and Jamie Bell (The Thing) lead this comic adaptation about the superhero team that gained powers after an accident in space.
Twentieth Century Fox
"Masterminds" - August 7Kristen Wiig, Jason Sudekis and Zach Galifianakis star in this heist comedy about a real 1997 armored car robbery in North Carolina
"The Man From U.N.C.L.E." - August 14Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer play an American and Russian agent forced to team up to stop an evil organization trying to steal nuclear weapons. The film is based on the 1964 TV series of the same name.
"Straight Outta Compton" - August 14O'Shea Jackson Jr., the son of Ice Cube, plays his father in this look at the impact of the revolutionary gangster rap group NWA.
"Hitman: Agent 47" - August 28Rupert Friend stars in this video game adaptation about a genetically engineered assassin who teams up with a mysterious young woman to bring down an evil corporation.
Twentieth Century Fox
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