"Deadpool" has come out swinging: The violence and nudity-filled Marvel flick -- starring Ryan Reynolds as the Merc With a Mouth -- has earned a whopping $12.7 million in Thursday preview screenings, the highest total ever for both a February release and an R-rated film.
That record-breaking night foretells big things for the flick's future throughout the rest of the weekend, with some optimistic industry analysts suggesting "Deadpool" could wind up making between $70 million and $80 million throughout its first three days of release. Studio Fox is hedging its bets, estimating a lower haul between $60 million and $65 million, but based on Thursday's performance, that may be more than modest. It's already bagged $12 million from international markets, bumping up its current worldwide total to more than $25 million in preview receipts alone.
"Deadpool's" impressive domestic Thursday numbers take down previous R-rated preview box office champ "The Hangover Part II," which hauled in $10.4 million back in 2011. And it also bested fellow high-grossing R-rated flick "Fifty Shades of Grey," which was the previous February release preview record holder, scoring $8.6 million just last year.
"Deadpool" is in theaters now -- and it looks like you better see it this weekend, before all your friends spoil its big surprises.