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Tarantino's best opening yet with 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'

Rachel Tesler

"Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" premiered Friday, as Quentin Tarantino’s latest film starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, and Margot Robbie and raking in $41 million for opening weekend, making it Tarantino’s top domestic opening.

The movie features Western actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) who finds himself past his prime, and his stunt-double/friend Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), as their lives intersect with their neighbors Sharon Tate and (Margot Robbie) and Roman Polanski (Rafal Zawierucha), in 1969 on the cusp on the Manson murders. The newest film exhibits the characteristic camp and highly-stylized direction iconic of Tarantino’s films.

Its production company Sony advertised the movie as “The 9th Film from Quentin Tarantino” and one of the final films from the director. When it debuted at Cannes on the 25th anniversary of "Pulp Fiction," global press generated Oscar buzz and Rotten Tomatoes scored the movie above 90th percentile months before its opening.

Deadline’s analysts reported a 15 percent decline or slightly more for Hollywood ticket sales on Saturday. The movie will likely fall just shy of $50 million by the end of the weekend. Sony and Bona Film Group shelled out between $90 million and $96 million for Hollywood, but total global costs for the film are estimated to be around $110 million, according to Deadline.

Hollywood’s previews on Thursday in North American theaters saw success with $5.8 million in sales. The highly-anticipated dramedy offered counter-programming to Disney’s smash-hit re-make in the "Lion King," "Avengers: Endgame, and Spider-Man: Far From Home."

The rest of the box office saw the continued success of "Lion King" as it reported $76.7 million for the weekend, with the potential of reaching $80 million. "Lion King’s" current numbers project that the film may surpass the original cartoon’s gross. "Endgame" also brought in $841.9 million at the domestic box office by the end of June, and it has since increased that total to $855.9 million as of Sunday, surpassing James Cameron’s "Avatar" for record highest-grossing film.

Tarantino’s film romanticizes a former heyday of Hollywood, in the midst of the fading grandeur of the studio.

Michael Tammero, host of "In the FOXlight," spoke to FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo about the blockbuster's potential impact on the industry as a non-sequel, non-remake.

"This film is a rarity in Hollywood these days," he said. "With non-existing characters, and non-franchise. It's not based on the comic books. And it's targeted to adults who knew that we actually count in Hollywood these days."

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