'Fate of the Furious' set to smash global box office records

"The Fate of the Furious

The latest entry in "The Fast and the Furious" series is proving there's still plenty of fuel left in the franchise's tank, with "The Fate of the Furious" zooming to the top spot in the worldwide box office in its opening weekend - and, if the momentum continues, is likely to set a new record as the biggest worldwide debut of all time. "The Fate of the Furious" is tipped to edge past "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" based on its solid performance in 63 territories - China inclusive. Still, the $532 million opening proves this franchise is more viable than ever. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.

Interest in "The Fast and the Furious" had grown since "Furious 7" because of the death of Paul Walker, who played lead character Brian O'Conner.

The rest of the chart looked sleepy in comparison to the fresh fuel of "The Fate of the Furious".

"The Fate of the Furious" is set to beat "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" for the biggest global box office debut.

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Directed by Straight Outta Compton's F. Gary Gray, the movie stars Dwyane "The Rock" Johnson, Vin Diesel, Jason Statham, Charlize Theron, Michelle Rodriguez, Helen Mirren, and Kurt Russell.

The studio has not released an official production budget, but it is reported to be in the pricey $250 million range. Despite the rising costs, the film remains on pace to top $1 billion worldwide, making more sequels a certainty.

Beauty and the Beast continued to draw viewers to North American theaters this weekend, earning US$13.6 million in its fifth week.

On the basis of United States box office alone, it falls to a stunning 42nd place on the same list, behind, well, everything: The Force Awakens, Jurassic World, a bunch of Marvel movies, Iron Man, some of the Harry Potter films, The Hunger Games, Deadpool, Finding Dory and, more recently, even Beauty and the Beast.

Sony's "Smurfs: The Lost Village" came in fourth with $6.5 million, pushing the animated film's North American total to an anemic $24.7 million. The Fate of the Furious is in theaters everywhere now.

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