Disney’s (NYSE:DIS) Beauty and the Beast is expected to score a record breaking opening weekend of $168M-$180M after earning $16.3M in Thursday night previews, the second-highest such preview figure ever for any G or PG-rated movie behind Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince ($22M in 2009).

Piper Jaffray predicts DIS could rake in $900M from the film, which would provide a strong start for the company coming off last year’s impressive showing when four of the top five grossing movies were Disney films.

Most forecasts had pegged the remade classic for a strong $120M-$140M opening weekend, but analysts at Box Office think the film could pull in as much as $175M, which would capture the record for the biggest March opening, held by Warner Bros.’ Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which pulled in $166M in its opening last year.

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