Sony’s “Bad Boys: Ride or Die,” starring Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, had an outstanding opening weekend, grossing $56 million domestically. This marks the highest-grossing R-rated opening since “Oppenheimer” last July and is Will Smith’s sixth-highest U.S./Canada opening.

Record-Breaking Performance

The film, directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, surpassed initial projections of $40M-$50M, demonstrating strong audience interest. The movie’s global debut reached an impressive $104.6 million, showcasing its international appeal. The film’s Friday to Saturday hold was consistent with its predecessor, “Bad Boys for Life,” showing only a 10% drop.

“Bad Boys: Ride or Die” also dominated PLF (Premium Large Format) and IMAX screens, which contributed to 38% of the film’s gross. IMAX alone accounted for 9.3% of the domestic weekend earnings, totaling $5.2 million across 401 auditoriums. The film’s evening showings were particularly successful, with 32% of the gross earned after 8 PM.

The movie’s strong opening weekend saw it outperform several other releases. “The Garfield Movie,” in its third weekend, earned $10 million, while other new releases like “IF” and “The Watchers” lagged behind. “The Watchers,” despite a $30 million budget, only managed $7 million globally.

Global Marketing and Promotions

Sony executed an extensive global PR tour for “Bad Boys: Ride or Die,” spanning three continents and ten cities, including Dubai, Riyadh, Madrid, Berlin, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Brussels, Amsterdam, New York, and Miami. Highlights included a grand arrival in Los Angeles on a double-decker bus with a live performance by Will Smith, and a massive turnout of 50,000 fans in Mexico City. The tour also featured the first Hollywood premiere in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Sony’s marketing strategy, led by co-president Josh Greenstein, integrated high-profile live sports events, music platforms, and social media. As the exclusive studio sponsor of the NBA Finals, Sony partnered with ESPN for comedic spots featuring Miami athletes Jimmy Butler and Lionel Messi. Additionally, a presence on platforms like Spotify, Pandora, and Soundcloud, along with a significant promotion with iHeart, helped amplify the film’s reach.

The marketing campaign included a variety of creative promotions, such as a TikTok challenge and custom social content featuring Khaby Lame. Influencers with a combined reach of over 1.4 billion were engaged to support the film’s release across 16 international markets.