"Wonder Woman" crushed expectations and smashed records this weekend with her first solo movie.
The Warner Bros. and DC Comics film appears to have delivered on massively high expectations -- as of the Sunday morning the super hero film is looking at a $100.5 million domestic opening weekend from 4,165 locations.
Compared with other super hero movies, that's a larger domestic opening than "Iron Man" ($98.6 million); "Doctor Strange" ($85 million); "Thor" ($65.7 million); but less than "Deadpool" ($132 million) and "Man of Steel" ($116.6 million). The Patty Jenkins-directed blockbuster could have a bigger opening once the finally tallies come in Monday.
Jenkins now holds the banner for the best domestic opening ever for a female director, topping "Fifty Shades of Grey's" Sam Taylor-Johnson ($85.1 million). Before "Wonder Woman," Jenkins' only feature was "Monster" -- an Academy Award winner that she made more than a decade ago with an $8 million budget.
Gal Gadot stars in the film as the titular hero. The Israeli actress -- also known for her role in the Fast and Furious franchise — made her debut as Diana Prince in "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice," and will also appear at least twice more in both "Justice League" movies if she doesn't get a sequel of her own.
While the opening weekend for "Wonder Woman" is impressive, DC Comics movies have scored more in the past — recently "Batman v Superman" and "Suicide Squad" rocketed to $166 million and $134 million openings respectively. But "Wonder Woman" had something those movies didn't -- critical support (it currently has a 93 percent "Fresh" on Rotten Tomatoes). The conversation surrounding critics' impact on the summer box office swirled after "Baywatch" received an aggregate score of 19 percent, and proceeded to flop over the slowest Memorial Day weekend in nearly two decades.
The only other major release this weekend was Fox's "Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie" which will take in $23.5 million from 3,434. Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, Nick Kroll, Thomas Middleditch, Jordan Peele, and Kristen Schaal toplined the voice cast of the animated adventure about two students who hypnotize their principal into thinking he's a super hero.
Disney's "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales" should land in third this weekend with about $22 million from 4,276 locations. Disney and Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" continues to stay in the top five, this weekend in the fourth slot. With an additional $10 million in North American grosses from 3,507 locations, James Gunn's sequel has earned over $350 million domestically in five weekends. "Baywatch" rounds out the top five this weekend with about $8.5 million from 3,647 locations.