Fast & Furious 6 races away with biggest Memorial Day weekend box office ever

Boom. A big fat congratulations to Justin Lin and the Fast & Furious crew. The holiday weekend ain't over yet, and the totals are still coming in, but the sixth installment of the auto action series celebrated the biggest Memorial Day weekend box office opening ever, raking in a well-deserved crap-ton of summer blockbuster money: Box Office Report: 'Fast 6' Earns $122 Million-Plus, Runs 'Hangover III' Off Course.

Universal's Fast & Furious 6 is racing towards a $122 million Memorial Day debut after leaving The Hangover Part III in the dust and scoring the studio its biggest domestic opening of all time, not accounting for inflation. The action pic also marks the studio's biggest international opening, taking in $158 million and pushing the film's worldwide total north of $280 million through Monday.

Universal's previous best opening was Jurassic Park entry The Lost World, which debuted to $90.2 million over Memorial Day weekend in 1997.

In North America, many questioned the decision to open Fast 6 and Hangover III -- the final installment in Todd Phillips' R-rated comedy franchise -- on the same weekend, since they each target males. Fast 6 benefited mightily from Hispanics, who made up 32 percent of the audience and are the most frequent moviegoers in the U.S.

"This isn't just a car racing movie anymore. It's an action pic with broad appeal," said Universal president of domestic distribution Nikki Rocco, noting how unusual it is for a franchise to gain such strength with time. "And it played to a tremendously diverse audience."
Have you seen Fast & Furious 6 yet? It's pretty much everything you hope out of a movie like this, delivering the action and tying it all together to reward fans who have stuck with the entire series -- a fitting end to Justin Lin's run on the series. And now it's a big hit. Is it really a surprise that Universal is in such a rush to get the seventh Fast, now handed off to director James Wan, out by next summer?

UPDATE: The numbers are in, and Fast & Furious 6 has topped the Memorial Day box office with $120 million, for a worldwide take of $317 million -- a franchise best and the biggest debut of all time for Universal: Box Office Report: 'Fast 6' No. 1 With $300 Million Globally; 'Hangover III' Sputters

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