Universal Pictures' Jurassic World set box office records earlier this year opening to a whopping $208 million the first weekend and going on to score $1.6 billion worldwide, beating out Marvel's The Avengers: Age of Ultron which scored a healthy $191 million during it's opening weekend. However, these numbers are probably nothing compared to what Star Wars: The Force Awakens is about to do. Here's what you need know: The Internet broke back in October when pre-sales for the Force Awakens opened, generating $6.5 million in domestic ticket sales. Previous ticket sales for an IMAX feature had never topped $1 million on a single day until now. Fandango reports that the site sold eight times more tickets than it did on the first day of sales for the previous record holder, The Hunger Games. "The only words to describe the first day of IMAX worldwide advance ticket sales for Star Wars: The Force Awakens are 'record-shattering'," said Greg Foster, CEO of IMAX Entertainment.
The-Numbers reports that this could be the widest opening on record across approximately 4,500 theaters domestically. The prior record holder is The Twilight Saga: Eclipse with 4,468 theaters. If this is the case, opening weekend numbers are sure to crush that of Jurassic World which opened across 4,274 theaters. If you consider a potential take of $48,000 per theater across the additional 226 theaters during opening weekend, you could see The Force Awakens exceeding Jurassic World by another $10 million, possibly reaching upwards of a $220 million opening weekend.
The international release is nearly simultaneous, with many countries getting to see it starting, December 16. So the numbers will begin to rack up fast between both domestic and international. The release to the worlds second largest economy, China, is scheduled for January 9, 2016. Much of the delay is due to China preserving their own box office with native releases. CinemaBlend reported that China permitted the original Star Wars films to be seen in public theaters for the first time just this year despite many citizens seeing it via bootlegged copies in their own homes for years. Perfect timing for China to get in on the big-screen experience that is Star Wars.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters on December 18, but you already knew that. May the force be with you!
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