Netflix’s first major attempt at a big-budget film, Bright starring Will Smith, drew enough viewers in its first three days to compete with the opening-weekend audiences of several major Hollywood movies this year, according to a new report by Nielsen.
Nielsen said Thursday that Bright had 11 million viewers between December 22nd through the 24th in the U.S. If those viewers each paid the average movie-ticket price of about $9, that would result to a box office opening of $99 million, which is close to what Universal Pictures’ The Fate of The Furious made in April.
That said, Netflix subscribers use the service to get a variety of shows to watch, and may not have paid to go see Bright if it was only available in theaters. Moreover, Netflix also disputes Nielsen’s methodology, in part because it only measures views on televisions, leaving out computers and phones. Netflix does not release their audience data.
But those numbers are very encouraging for Netflix, which spent approximately $90 million to make the buddy-cop Will Smith, especially considering the movie only got positive reviews form 12% of top movie critics on Rotten Tomatoes.