Harry Potter 8's First Day at the Box Office: Will the Weekend Slay Dark Knight's Record?

by Anthony D'Alessandro
July 15, 2011 8:27 AM
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Thompson on Hollywood
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 charted a record midnight domestic estimate of $43.5 million from 3,800 sites, unseating previous champ The Twilight Saga: Eclipse which had earned $30 million in the slot, reports Anthony D'Alessandro.

Bowing abroad on Wednesday in 26 countries, Deathly Hallows: Part 2 collected $43.6 million from 24 countries, Today, stateside, the film unspools in 4,300 venues--70% (or 3,000) of which are 3-D. Of these, 275 are IMAX hubs. While earlier projections saw Deathly Hallows: Part 2 becoming the third-highest weekend opener of all-time, the town is now predicting that the film will kick The Dark Knight's all-time Friday-Sunday record of $158.4 million in the pants.

Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is also set to topple the all-time $260-million international weekend opening bow set by Pirates 4. Though it took Transformers: Dark of the Moon a week to take in a massive $401 million, Deathly Hallows: Part 2 does have a shot at beating that record in fewer days. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, the former foreign champ to Pirates 4, made $236 million in 54 markets over the July 15-19, 2009 period. While the typical domestic opening for a film is weighed at three days from Friday-Sunday, that weight is five-days abroad, spanning Wednesday-Sunday (France opens its releases in the middle of the week).

Together with its five-day domestic coin of $158 million, Half Blood Prince was the top global earner prior to Transformers 3 at $394 million. If Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is going to match the five-day opening of Half-Blood Prince in three-days stateside, and rival the $260 million Pirates 4 record, it will amass north of $418 million, easily beating Transformers 3 in less time. What's keeping all of these summer blockbusters alive this season? 3-D.

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  • corwinsr | July 16, 2011 10:34 AMReply

    After watching a midnight showing I predicted it would make at least 171m and beat Dark Knight. Now it looks like I estimated too low. Holy crap this thing is gonna be huge!

  • Anthony | July 16, 2011 6:14 AMReply

    We'll see Sugreeb -- I think the studios will be cautious of 3D cost if they can't make it back on the right film. Question--will more superhero films use it? Auds were either put off or divided by Green Lantern and Thor. Spider-man 4 will be probably justified in its 3D due to the flying sequences.

  • Sugreeb2001 | July 16, 2011 3:59 AMReply

    My only gripe - more unnecessary 3D films next summer because of back to back smashes.

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