Weekend Box Office Report – The Last Jedi has second biggest US opening of all time

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“I have a bad feeling about this,” said no one ever when predicting the box office fortunes of Star Wars: The Last Jedi which was always guaranteed to make a killing. However, there was a prevailing consensus among pundits, backed up by the lower performance of Rogue One last year, that The Last Jedi would not be able to reach the record-breaking highs of 2015’s The Force Awakens which had become an unprecedented Event with a capital E thanks to being the first Star Wars entry in a decade and a widely publicized return to the filmmaking approaches of the 40-year old Original Trilogy. And that consensus was indeed correct, as The Last Jedi wasn’t able to dethrone The Force Awakens as the biggest box office opening of all time this weekend past. It came rather close though.

The Last Jedi brought in a whopping $220 million in the US alone this weekend, giving it the second largest domestic opening weekend ever behind The Force Awakens’ $247 million. The Last Jedi also posted the second largest Thursday night preview ever, the second largest opening day ever, second largest single day ever, second largest Friday ever, and only the second film in history to earn over $100 million in one day. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, the first place for all of those is occupied by The Force Awakens.

Internationally, The Last Jedi more than doubled its domestic earnings by bringing in an additional $230 million, with the UK leading the race in international markets with $36 million. Yes, the UK and not China, but that’s only because The Last Jedi has yet to open in the Middle Kingdom, which is the second largest movie market in the world. This is actually a big deal. As it currently stands, The Last Jedi the fifth largest global debut with $450 million, however a number of movies ahead of it on that list opened in China on the same weekend. Take their Chinese box office contributions out of the mix, and The Fate of the Furious ($541 million) and Jurassic World ($525 million) drops heavily down the list to The Last Jedi the third largest global debut ever behind The Force Awakens ($529 million) and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 ($482 million).

It has to be pointed out though that the new Star Wars movies have not had the type of reception in China that some of these other franchises have, purely because the original films never aired there so there isn’t this entire generation of filmgoers who obsess over the Star Wars franchise like in other parts of the world. Just to give an example of this, The Force Awakens earned $52 million in its lifetime from China, but The Fate of the Furious – a newer franchise that modern Chinese filmgoers have grown up with – earned a mammoth $184 million there. Either way though, The Last Jedi is already a huge box office smash – as predicted – and will definitely continue to earn a ton more in the coming weeks.

With most of the other entries on the US charts just jumping down a sport or two according to the changes at the top, that’s really all the box office news we have for today, so I… Oh wait. It turns out there was actually another movie silly enough to open up in the US next to the Star Wars juggernaut. I guess I need to cover it too. The movie in question is animated kids fare Ferdinand which sees (or doesn’t see, as it were) John Cena voicing a cartoon bull. Unfortunately for production studio Blue Sky, much like the myth believed about bulls, they’re probably seeing red right now. The red of their financial books, I mean. Despite opening in second place, Ferdinand could only pull in $13 million, the lowest opening ever for the studio. Internationally it could only add another $6 million to that figure which puts it still a very long way from even matching its $111 million budget.

Let’s see what the rest of the US box office chart looks like:

No.Movie Name Weekend gross Percentage change US Domestic gross Worldwide gross Last Week's Position
1Star Wars: The Last Jedi $220 million NE $220 million $450 million NE
2Ferdinand $13.3 million NE $13.3 million $19.5 million NE
3Coco $10 million -15% $150.8 million $448.2 million 1st
4Wonder $5.4 million -36% $109.2 million $153.6 million 3rd
5Justice League $4.1 million -56% $219.4 million $633.9 million 2nd
6Daddy's Home 2 $3.8 million -35% $96.5 million $157.5 million 6th
7Thor: Ragnarok $2.9 million -52%% $306.3 million $841.7 million 5th
8The Disaster Artist $2.6 million -58% $12.9 million $15.5 million 4th
9Murder on the Orient Express $2.4 million -52% $97.2 million $297.9 million 7th
10Lady Bird $2.1 million -38% $25.9 million $25.9 million 9th

NE = New Entry

 

 

Last Updated: January 8, 2018

Kervyn Cloete

A man of many passions - but very little sleep - I've been geeking out over movies, video games, comics, books, anime, TV series and lemon meringues as far back as I can remember. So show up for the geeky insight, stay for the delicious pastries.

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