'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' opening night sets box office record

NEW YORK -- "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" has set a box office record with an estimated $57 million from Thursday night shows.

See Full Article

The Walt Disney Co.'s estimate on Friday easily surpassed the previous Thursday night record of $43.5 million by 2011's "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2."

The movie's international rollout, which began Wednesday, has brought in a total of $72.7 million. That includes the biggest single day ever in the United Kingdom, where it made an estimated $14.4 million. The film cost about $200 million to make, according to industry estimates.

The early figures suggest "The Force Awakens" is on course to exceed the record domestic opening of "Jurassic World," which debuted with $208.8 million in June.

J.J. Abrams' seventh chapter in George Lucas's space saga arrived with the kind of hoopla and anticipation that few films have ever matched. Costumed, lightsaber-wielding fans have lined up around blocks, from Jakarta to Paris, to be among the first to see "The Force Awakens" (and hopefully avoid any spoilers from its intensely guarded plot).

In North America, the film sold a record $100 million worth of presale tickets before Thursday previews began at approximately 7 p.m. EST. Playing in 4,134 theatres, "The Force Awakens" is the widest December release ever attempted.

3-D and Imax screenings are helping to propel the record gross. Disney said that 47 per cent of the box office came from 3-D showings and $5.7 million from Imax screens.

A lot is riding on the film for Disney, which paid $4.06 billion for Lucasfilm in 2012. Sequels and spinoffs are already in development for years to come, not to mention an entire corner of Disneyland devoted to the franchise.

Strong reviews for the film, which is set 30 years after "Return of the Jedi," have added to the fervour for "The Force Awakens." The American Film Institute listed it among its top 10 films of the year.

That strong word of mouth will help "The Force Awakens" attract the kind of repeat viewings that made James Cameron's "Avatar" and "Titanic" the highest grossing films of all time. Whether "The Force Awakens" can come close to the global hauls of those films ($2.8 billion for "Avatar" and $2.2 billion for "Titanic") won't be clear for weeks.



Advertisements

Latest Entertainment News

  • Stephen Fry returning to Shaw Festival with debut of 'Mythos: A Trilogy'

    Entertainment CTV News
    NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, Ont. - Stephen Fry is returning to the Shaw Festival with a starring role in a story of his own creation. The celebrated British actor, writer and comedian will appear in "Mythos: A Trilogy - Gods. Source
  • Kim Kardashian West sorry for defending makeup artist

    Entertainment CTV News
    LOS ANGELES -- Kim Kardashian West is apologizing after feeling the ire of the internet for defending a makeup artist who used racial slurs several times on camera. Kardashian West says in a Snapchat video Tuesday that she's sorry for "feeling like I had the right to say 'get over it' in a situation that involves racism. Source
  • Emma Stone tops list of best paid actresses

    Entertainment CTV News
    Oscar-winning Emma Stone capped a perfect 12 months on Wednesday as she knocked Jennifer Lawrence off the top spot on Forbes' 2017 list of the world's highest-paid actresses. Stone, 28, who won best actress for her role as a struggling performer in "La La Land," made US$26 million in pre-tax earnings in the year up to June, according to the magazine's annual chart. Source
  • Elvis lives in our hearts

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    On a warm August afternoon in 1977, the world was stunned by the news coming from their radios and TVs. Elvis Presley was dead. Four decades after the King of Rock ‘n Roll suddenly died of heart failure in his famed Memphis mansion, Graceland, the Presley legend has only grown. Source
  • 'Deadpool 2' production resumes in Vancouver after stuntwoman's death

    Entertainment CTV News
    VANCOUVER -- Production on the movie "Deadpool 2" appears to have resumed in Vancouver, two days after a stuntwoman was killed in a motorcycle accident on set. Crew members were back at work on Wednesday on an elaborate set underneath the Granville Street bridge, which includes multiple wrecked cars. Source
  • Ryan Reynolds leads moment of silence for 'Deadpool 2' stuntwoman; production resumes

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    The cameras are rolling again on the Vancouver production of Deadpool 2, two days after the motorcycle death of stuntwoman Joi “SJ” Harris. Deadpool 2 star Ryan Reynolds and director David Leitch led a moment of silence on the film’s set Wednesday to honour Harris, who was killed in a crash during production on Monday. Source
  • Pink 'made amends' with Christina Aguilera

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Pink has “made amends” with Christina Aguilera after over 15 years of feuding. The pop queens fell out with each other over their collaboration on 2001 hit Lady Marmalade, but Pink insists there’s no longer any bad blood between the divas. Source
  • Drake teasing fans with new T.O. restaurant?

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Can Toronto have too much Drake? He has two retail locations selling Drizzy-themed swag, a private club at the Air Canada Centre, gets his own “Drake Night” at a Raptors home game once a season and hosts his own festival over the August long weekend every summer. Source
  • Emma Stone is highest-paid actress of 2017: Forbes

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Emma Stone has topped Forbes’ list of highest-paid actresses. The La La Land star has earned US$26 million in the last 12 months. Jennifer Aniston follows in second place, with $25.5 million, and Jennifer Lawrence takes the third spot with $24 million. Source
  • 'Mission: Impossible 6' still on track despite Tom Cruise's ankle injury

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    LOS ANGELES — Production has shut down on “Mission: Impossible 6” due to star Tom Cruise’s broken ankle. Paramount Pictures said Wednesday that production will go on hiatus while Cruise makes a full recovery. Cruise broke his ankle while performing a stunt for the film during its London-based shoot. Source