erik lundegaard

'The Force Awakens' Shatters Box Office Records

It's true. All of it.

Opening weekend, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” grossed $247.9 million domestically. That shatters the mark set by “Jurassic World” earlier this summer by around $40 million. You expected it, you would have been hugely disappointed if it hadn't, but it's still fun to run through the numbers:

  • Its single-day total on Friday was $119 million, which is the best single-day total by something like $30 million. The former record-holder was the final “Harry Potter” film, which opened to $91 million in 2011. Put it this way: Only 19 movies have ever had better opening weekends.
  • It shattered the best December opening weekend by threefold. The previous record-holder was “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” which grossed $84.6 million in 2012. (December tends to be a tepid month for box office because everyone's too busy getting ready for Christmas.)
  • It's the seventh-highest grossing release of the year.
  • It also grossed $281 million internationally, for an opening worldwide total of $528 million: another record.

If it picks up again after Christmas, which I expect it to, all bets are off for the highest-grossing domestic film of all time: “Avatar” at $749 million. But it'll be tougher to beat “Avatar”'s worldwide mark of $2.7 billion. I'd put money on the former, not on the latter.

My $12 or so was among the receipts, as I saw the movie on Saturday afternoon with Patricia, my nephews, my sister and her husband. “The Force Awakens” is not without its problems (a bit derivative of the first “Star Wars”), but the two new leads are great, and it's the kind of film that will draw repeat customers.

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Posted at 02:55 PM on Mon. Dec 21, 2015 in category Movies - Box Office  

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