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With $3.3 billion already grossed this year, Marvel Studios is back for one more round in 2018 with “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” which made $11.5 million from preview screenings on Thursday.
While that’s below the preview numbers for the last five MCU films, all of which opened to over $100 million, it’s nearly double that of the Thursday launch for the first “Ant-Man,” which made $6.2 million from previews in 2015. It’s also on the same level as the Thursday launch of the first “Guardians of the Galaxy,” which made $11.2 million.
“Ant-Man and the Wasp” is projected by independent trackers for an opening of $75-85 million, with some analysts projecting over $90 million. If this sequel can beat all expectations and finish the weekend with over $100 million, it will be the sixth consecutive Marvel Studios release to do so. Regardless, it will gross well above the opening of “Ant-Man,” which opened to $57.2 million.
Taking place in between “Captain America: Civil War” and “Avengers: Infinity War,” “Ant-Man and the Wasp” rejoins Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) as he goes into house arrest after assisting Captain America during the events of “Civil War.” The reluctant hero is forced to suit up again after a mysterious villain named Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen) steals technology belonging to the original Ant-Man, Hank Pym (Michael Douglas).
This time, Hank’s daughter, Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) jumps into action as The Wasp, but she’s in for the shock of her life when her believed-to-be-dead mother, Janet (Michelle Pfeiffer), returns after decades in the Quantum Realm. Michael Pena, Walton Goggins, Bobby Cannavale, Judy Greer and Tip “T.I.” Harris also star, with Peyton Reed back as director.