Meet your new box office champion – Zack Snyder’s 300: Rise of an Empire. Considering everything, the odds were pretty much stacked against Rise, what with its March release and the seven-year gap between Rise and the original. But in the absence of any real competition, the CGI-fueled action flick easily rose (get it?) to the top of the box office. It’s $46 million opening weekend was on point with predictions.

300: Rise of an Empire Still
Rise is just as bloody, but maybe not quite as profitable, as the original.

According to Forbes, $6.8m of those profits came from its 343 IMAX locations (it’s their second-biggest R-rated debut). Rise of an Empire doesn’t even come close to matching its predecessor’s debut from 2007. Back then, the original 300 made $70.9 million on opening weekend, even without the additional IMAX charge. But then, few franchises ever match the success of the first movie. A successful trilogy is pretty much the Holy Grail of the film industry – things like Men in Black ($51, $52 and $54 million opening weekends) and the Matrix trilogy come to mind.

If you're planning to see this in a theater, watch the trailer first:

But 300’s solid domestic opening gets an even more impressive boost from international markets. As of Monday, the film has earned an additional $87 million overseas, bringing its total to $132 million. With a budget of $110 million, this means that whatever the critics say, Warner Bros. and Legendary pictures are already making back their investment. Plus, 300 is just about certain to spend several weeks at the top of the North American box office – yet more proof that the power of the sequel is not to be underestimated.

Eva Green, 300: Rise of an Empire Still
Despite the updated cast of stars, Rise can't match the original's profits.