Pundits have been saying for weeks that "Avengers: Age of Ultron" was poised to score a massive box office debut, and the hotly-anticipated superhero flick didn't disappoint during its first night of screenings.

The sequel to "The Avengers" pulled in a whopping $27.6 million during Thursday night previews, blowing the first flick's $18.7 million Thursday take out of the water. That makes "Age of Ultron" Marvel's highest-grossing Thursday night debut.

Of course, that's a bit of a dubious record. Forbes points out that there are several other films ahead of "Ultron" on the Thursday night chart, led by "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -- Part 2" with $43.5 million, and also including "The Dark Knight Rises" ($30.6 million), and "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn -- Part 2" ($30.4 million).

But "Ultron" has bigger box office plans in its sights, and according to Forbes, this huge Thursday take could predict an unheard-of gross in the $230 million range if numbers stay consistent all weekend. That's a bit unlikely, but based on previous Marvel flicks' performances, it's not impossible.

Stay tuned. These superheros have only just begun to fly.

[via: Forbes]

Photo credit: Disney