Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker breaks the franchise's advanced ticket sales record on Fandango. With the release of the film's final trailer earlier this week, it's safe to say anticipation for the blockbuster is at an all-time high. Though the preview was extremely light on concrete story details, the footage was more than enough to send fans into a frenzy, as they began speculating about everything from Emperor Palpatine's plot to C-3PO's apparent death. If Lucasfilm's goal was to excite audiences about one more trip to the galaxy far, far away, they were successful.
In conjunction with the trailer drop, The Rise of Skywalker tickets went on sale a couple of days ago. Already, Disney is raking in the cash, setting a new Atom Tickets record within the first hour (topping the juggernaut that was Avengers: Endgame, no less). Atom isn't the only ticket provider that'll need to rewrite their history books by the time The Rise of Skywalker has left its mark. Fandango has also been reaping the benefits of Star Wars hype.
Per Deadline, The Rise of Skywalker broke Fandango's Star Wars franchise record, besting The Force Awakens during the first few hours. Additionally, Star Wars 9 is Fandango's top daily seller, accounting for over half of the total purchases.
When it premiered in 2015, The Force Awakens shattered just about every box office record (especially domestically), scoring $247.9 million in its opening weekend alone. That The Rise of Skywalker is surpassing The Force Awakens is impressive, but this should not be taken as evidence it is going to top The Force Awakens at the box office. Star Wars 7's all-time domestic record of $936.6 million is unlikely to be broken any time soon. That said, it wouldn't be surprising if The Rise of Skywalker was able to gross more than The Last Jedi ($620.1 million domestically). Hollywood has a long history of final franchise installments hitting the jackpot; while there are more Star Wars movies on the way, Rise of Skywalker marketing has made it abundantly clear this is the definitive end of the Skywalker saga, giving it the feel of a proper cinematic event.
Last year, when Star Wars was hit by the one-two punch of The Last Jedi backlash and Solo bombing commercially, there was a feeling franchise fatigue had settled in. Disney will be the first to admit they rushed out new Star Wars content, but The Rise of Skywalker pre-sales indicate there's still substantial interest among die-hard enthusiasts and general moviegoers. It wouldn't have beaten a Force Awakens record if there wasn't. And with Star Wars back in its new home of December, The Rise of Skywalker is virtually guaranteed to be a huge hit. Instead of opening against Avengers: Infinity War and Deadpool 2 like Solo did, The Rise of Skywalker will be the main attraction of the holiday season and definitely be the biggest film on the market. The only question is how high will the total go.
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019