R&B singer-turned-actor Ne-Yo invited fans to join him for a cinema date in New York on Friday by offering up 200 free tickets to his new movie Red Tails.

The "So Sick" hitmaker stars as one of the heroic African-American Tuskegee Airmen in George Lucas' historical big-budget epic and he decided to help boost box office profits for the movie's opening weekend by treating devotees to a free screening in Times Square.

In a Twitter.com post on Friday afternoon, he writes, "Salutations fam! RedTails is in theaters 2day (sic)! Come watch it w/ (with) me! NYC 1st 200ppl (people) for the 7:20pm show of Red Tails AMC42nd st. Tix (tickets) on me!"

Ne-Yo will have to wait until Sunday, when the box office totals are released, to learn whether his efforts paid off.

Star Wars creator Lucas recently revealed he struggled to find a studio to back the project because film bosses were not convinced the movie, which features an all-black cast, would be a global hit.