Somewhere between Spider-Man and the Hulk, you might just find Robert Downey Jr. in a can.
Box-office expectations were big—but not crazy big—for Iron Man, which kicks off the summer movie season tomorrow (or tonight at 8 p.m., if you want to be technical about it, and include the so-called "sneak" screenings).
"This is definitely no Spider-Man 3," says Jeff Bock, a box-office analyst for Exhibitor Relations Co. "But this is a huge comic-book property."
Bock's guess: Between $80 million and $100 million, and eventual status as the second biggest comic-book movie of the summer after the latest Batman adventure, The Dark Knight.
Paul Dergarabedian, president of the box-office tracking firm Media by Numbers, pegged a $75 million-$85 million opening—or, as he put it: "Higher than X-Men but less than Spider-Man."