While the lead-up to the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens saw plenty of skepticism from fans and critics as to whether J.J. Abrams’ revival of the franchise could live up to the legacy of the originally trilogy, there was never any real doubt that the movie would at least manage to be profitable at the box office. And if there was any doubt, it was quickly forgotten once the first teaser trailer was released and everyone saw the Millennium Falcon flying again.
Now that The Force Awakens is breaking all sorts of box office records, the conversation has turned to the question of just how successful it will be at the box office. Will it gross more than $2 billion? Will it knock Avatar off the top spot for the title of highest-grossing film of all time? It certainly seems to be on its way to greatness, as The Force Awakens has just crossed another milestone – and broken another record.
The movie has passed $1 billion at the global box office on its 12th day, becoming the fastest release in history to do so; Jurassic World, earlier this year, hit that milestone in 13 days. According to THR, The Force Awakens earned $153.5 million domestically over the Christmas weekend, bringing its domestic total to date to $544 million.
The huge performance was also a part of the highest-grossing Christmas holiday weekend in Hollywood history, with revenue crossing $300 million for the first time. The Will Ferrell/Mark Wahlberg comedy Daddy’s Home fared well with a figure of $38.8 million, with the Jennifer Lawrence comedy/drama Joy coming in third with $17.5 million. Other new releases, Concussion and the Point Break remake, fared less well; the former was actually the lowest opening of Will Smith’s career.
The Force Awakens now stands fifth all-time in domestic box office, with all-time #1 Avatar ($760.5 million) in its sights, following by Titanic ($658.6 million), Jurassic World ($652.2 million) and the first Avengers film ($623.3 million;) with The Force Awakens nowhere near the end of its theatrical run, it stands an excellent chance of ending James Cameron’s nearly two-decade stranglehold on the #1 spot.
Two other Star Wars films are in the all-time top ten – The Phantom Menace at #7 and the original Star Wars at #8, according to Box Office Mojo figures (not adjusted for inflation.) A New Hope was the highest-grossing film of all time for several years after its release and regained that title for a brief time after the Special Edition re-release in 1997.
Will The Force Awakens take the top spot? It’s hard to imagine it not doing so. The film has a several things the prequels didn’t have – critical respect, positive word-of-mouth and a stronger potential for re-watchability. Plus, the overall size of Star Wars fandom has grown by a couple of generations since the time of the prequels, giving the film a larger overall potential audience.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens is now playing in theaters, and will be followed by Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on December 16th, 2016, Star Wars: Episode VIII on May 26th, 2017, and the Han Solo Star Wars Anthology film on May 25th, 2018. Star Wars: Episode IX is expected to reach theaters in 2019, followed by the third Star Wars Anthology film in 2020.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter