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Vin Diesel as Bloodshot

If you were looking to May’s Fast & Furious 9 (F9) to get your Vin Diesel fix for 2020, you may find yourself going through withdrawal as that film, which was set to be one of the year’s biggest, has now been pushed back to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But fear not, because right now you can see Vin Diesel rocking a white tank top and beating up bad guys in Bloodshot, which opened in theaters last night.

Amidst everything else going on in the world, Sony’s Valiant Comics adaptation got a start on its box office run with preview screenings beginning at 5 p.m. on Thursday night. Bloodshot led in preview screenings among the new releases, earning $1.2 million from 2,631 locations according to Deadline. While that’s certainly not the kind of opening night performance of the MCU and Fast & Furious films the actor stars in, it actually bests some of Vin Diesel’s other films.

The Last Witch Hunter made $525K in its opening night in 2015 before going on to a $10.8 million opening weekend. Riddick, which was the third entry in an established property featuring one of Vin Diesel’s most iconic characters, made only $975K opening night. However that film was R-rated and the preview screenings began later at 8 p.m. Riddick went on to have a $19 million opening weekend domestically.

Yet, despite besting Riddick opening night, Bloodshot is not expected to match that film’s opening weekend performance. Tracking on Bloodshot has the film from first-time director Dave Wilson set to debut to between $8 million and $10 million. That will likely not be enough for Bloodshot to snag first place at the box office, despite the relative weakness of the various new releases.

Onward is expected to again take the top spot in its second frame with a performance in the high teens and possibly as high as $20 million. As far as the new releases are concerned, the faith-based film I Still Believe is looking to open ahead of Bloodshot with $11 million to $14 million. Blumhouse’s controversial film The Hunt opened to $435K Thursday night and will likely land in the single digit millions over the three-day.

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Ignoring the wider world goings on that could impact the box office, Bloodshot will not be benefitting from glowing reviews. While some critics enjoyed the film for what it is, the overall sentiment has been negative, with Bloodshot currently sitting at 34% rotten on Rotten Tomatoes. It calls to mind another comic book adaptation that received poor reviews, was compared to a 90s/early 2000s comic book flick and featured an ugly CGI-fest in the third act: Venom.

Unlike Venom though, which audiences loved and became a massive hit, fan and critical sentiment on Bloodshot isn’t so starkly divided. Thursday night audiences gave the film 3 stars and only a 45% definite recommend. So word of mouth likely won’t be enough to kick of Valiant Entertainment’s cinematic efforts with a bang.

That said, it will be interesting to see how the Coronavirus outbreak affects all the movies in theaters now like Bloodshot, and those arriving in the coming weeks. Heavy hitters like Mulan, F9, A Quiet Place Part II have all left for hopefully greener pastures.

If theaters stay open and audiences decide to go out, perhaps films like Bloodshot could wind up having greater legs and attracting more eyes than they otherwise would have without such stiff competition. Yet that depends on how much the current situation depresses theatergoing overall.

Bloodshot is now playing. Check out our 2020 Release Schedule to keep track of everything that is supposed to hit theaters this year, but you know, such things are in a state of fluidity at the moment.

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