‘The Batman’ Flies to $21.6 Million at Thursday Box Office

Robert Pattinson’s turn as the Dark Knight is projected for a $90 million opening by the studio

Warner Bros.

“The Batman,” DC and Warner Bros.’ first Batman film starring Robert Pattinson as the Dark Knight, made a whopping $21.6 million at the box office Thursday.

That number is inclusive of $2 million brought in Tuesday from IMAX sneak preview screenings. It’s a remarkable start for what could easily be the biggest box office hit since “Spider-Man: No Way Home” and only the second movie expected to cross $100 million at the domestic box office since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Warner Bros. is projecting “The Batman” for a conservative $90 million opening, though independent trackers say it could easily top $100 million and potentially reach $115 million. The film will also open exclusively in theaters after a full year in which WB’s entire slate was released both in theaters and same-day on HBO Max.

By comparison, the last Batman movie “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” from 2016 made $166 million at the domestic box office after it brought in a muscular $27.7 million in Thursday previews. But “The Batman,” with the exception of “Spider-Man: No Way Home,” easily has one of the largest preview totals for any film released during the pandemic, with “Venom: Let There Be Carnage” earning $11.6 million in previews ($90 million opening) and “Black Widow” making $13.2 million ($80 million opening).

“The Batman” has done well globally so far, despite the fact that it for now will not open in Russia amid the country’s invasion of Ukraine. Globally it’s projected for $225 million-plus.

Matt Reeves directs “The Batman” with Robert Pattinson taking on the role of Bruce Wayne. This film sees the Dark Knight investigating a string of murders of political figures in Gotham at the hands of The Riddler (Paul Dano), earning early positive reviews (it has an 86% on Rotten Tomatoes) for its heavy lean on hard-boiled mystery and noir inspired by films like “Se7en” and “Zodiac.”

The film also stars Zoe Kravitz, Jeffrey Wright, Colin Farrell, John Turturro, Andy Serkis and Peter Sarsgaard.