As one might’ve guessed when the film was first announced, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” has rewritten the box office record books following its astounding opening weekend.
Thursday night preview showings
“The Force Awakens” posted the biggest Thursday night gross of all time in North America with $57 million, beating the $43 million that “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2” grossed in July 2011. Those early previews helped “Star Wars” post the biggest single-day gross of all-time in North America on Friday, when the film took in $120.5 million, once again beating the $91 million earned by the “Harry Potter” finale.
… Which means “The Force Awakens” became the first movie in history to gross more than $100 million in a single day — and really, it barely took the film 21 hours.
J.J. Abrams‘ sci-fi sequel also posted the biggest December opening of all-time in both North America and worldwide, beating “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” and “The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King,” respectively, on each front.
While some forecasters thought “Star Wars” would have a difficult time posting the biggest domestic opening due its December debut date, the film blew past “Jurassic World’s” $208.8 million from last summer en route to grossing nearly $250 million at the North American box office.
It wasn’t just North America that embraced “The Force Awakens” with open arms. The film posted the biggest opening weekend in such key markets as Germany, Australia, Russia and the U.K. In fact, the film opened atop the box office in every market except for South Korea and Vietnam.
Pre-sales and IMAX
“Star Wars” set a record for advanced ticket sales in North America, taking in more than $100 million before the movie even opened. The film also set an IMAX record worldwide, taking in $48 million in large-screen theaters, beating the $44 million grossed by “Jurassic World.”
$200 million land speed record
Finally, “Star Wars” is now the fastest movie to cross the $200 million mark, and it holds the record for the biggest per-theater average for a wide release, taking in $57,568 per screen, nearly $20,000 more than the previous record set by the final “Harry Potter” movie.
The “Star Wars” franchise is currently fourth on the all-time list with $1.91 billion, behind James Bond ($2.09 billion), Harry Potter ($2.39 billion) and the Marvel Cinematic Universe ($3.59 billion). If “The Force Awakens” hits $2 billion, the franchise will claim the top spot, but with Disney planning more sequels in the latter two series over the coming years, this battle could rage for a long time.
There are doubtless more records that will fall or be challenged by “Star Wars.” But one is probably Most Articles About Prospects for Record-Breaking, so we’ll quit here.