Since Tuesday, Hancock has grossed over $40 million domestically and is on track to stack $100 million plus by wke’s end. While early word from critics and geeks is decidedly mixed, that’s a lot of moolah for Will Smith, director Peter Berg (his first major hit), and Sony. How puzzling then that Nikke Finke says there are serious doubts circling inside the studio regarding Hancock‘s franchise potential—she even compares the film’s buzz to Wild Wild West. Jab, Hook, Jab. With a reported budget of $150 million, Jeff Wells cries Feh if the film grosses $90 mill or less by Sunday. Meanwhile, Diddy swooned and probably received a nice paycheck. UPDATE 2: It’s on target for $110 million. Wells now says he’s “in pain.” Aww.

My take: the flow of flip-flops, Crocs and wheelies after the holiday will remain steady, less steady than I Am Legend, which received similar “third act was wack” laments, but so what? Will Smith’s “coasting” will outperform the equally pricey The Incredible Hulk. And judging from early viewer comments below, “light fun” beats out-and-out hate.

Discuss: So, what did you think? In a summer of superlative superhero outings, where does Will Smith’s gravity-defying, comic-less street gruff fall? What did you make of the twisteroo that’s drawing steely comparisons to the guy who made The Happening? Would the film have been cooler if it was freed up by an R-rating as originally envisioned and marked by the MPAA—click here to read Vincent Ngo‘s leaked screenplay forTonight, He Comes. Was the 92-minute running time too short? Was the editing botched? Is a sequel warranted? What of the performances of Smith and Charlize Theron? Does the Hancock storyline/concept cancel out “Demon in a Bottle” for Iron Man 2 as some have prematurely suggested in the preceding weeks? Worth seeing in a theater?

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