Man of Steel, directed by Snyder and produced by Christopher Nolan, debuted to $125.1 million at the Father's Day box office to score the top opening of all time for June. That figure includes $12 million grossed Thursday night from special Walmart screenings, putting the actual three-day figure at $113.1 million.
Either way, Man of Steel eclipsed previous June record-holder Toy Story 3, which debuted to $110.3 million in June 2010.
Man of Steel is a notable win for WB and Legendary Pictures, which co-financed the $225 million tentpole. In 2006, WB and Legendary's Superman Returns did okay business at the box office, but not enough to mark a new chapter for the franchise.
Man of Steel opens exactly 30 years after Superman III, the third entry in the wildly popular Christopher Reeve franchise. There was one more title in that series, Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, although it fell flat at the box office in summer 1987.
This time out, British star Henry Cavill stars as Clark Kent, aka Superman, which sees his character trying to hide his superpowers and live a normal life on Earth. Amy Adams stars as Lois Lane and Michael Shannon takes on the role of the menacing General Zod. Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner and Diane Lane also star.
David S. Goyer penned the script based on a story he crafted with Nolan. Warners and Legendary turned to Nolan as a producer on the project after he successfully revived the Batman franchise with his Dark Knight trilogy. In the summer of 2005, Nolan's Batman Begins opened to $48.7 million and had incredible staying power.
Man of Steel, while drawing mixed reviews, earned an A- CinemaScore, portending strong word of mouth. The pic skewed male (56 percent) and was fueled by older moviegoers, with 62 percent of the audience over the age of 25.
IMAX theaters did big business, taking in $13.3 million (12 percent of the total gross) to likewise score the biggest June opening of all time.
Overall, 41 percent of the revenues came from 3D screens.
Overseas, Man of Steel is opening day-and-date in 24 markets, and is did huge business in the U.K. and Southeast Asia. The film's take through Friday was nearly $30 million, but full weekend numbers weren't immediately available.
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