'It' shatters R-rated preview records in U.S.

it movie clown
"It" is already breaking box office records. (Warner Bros.)

The big screen adaptation of Stephen King's creepy clown tale is on course for a record-breaking weekend at the North American box office.

"It" beat "Deadpool"'s record for Thursday night sales to land the biggest R-rated movie launch in history, with $13.5 million from previews. Ryan Reynolds' superhero movie landed $12.7 million from previews in February, 2016.

The figure is also the largest horror pre-show gross ever and the largest September preview.

Industry experts are convinced It could hit $100 million over the weekend.

Director Andy Muschietti is already at work on an It sequel.

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