As expected, The Force Awakens has achieved a historic opening weekend, toppling box office records like Ewoks knocking over AT-STs. The latest Star Wars movie scored an estimated $238 million from opening weekend tickets in the United States alone, beating the previous highest domestic opening weekend total of $208.8 million, set by Jurassic World earlier this year. It also netted the records for the biggest single day opening, the fastest movie to gross $100 million — taking only one day to achieve that feat — and helped set a new record for the most money ever taken in US movie theaters in a single weekend.
The movie has yet to open in China
In addition to its domestic total, Disney reports that The Force Awakens earned $279 million from the international market, giving the movie a worldwide opening total of $517 million. That figure still lags slightly behind the best ever worldwide opening — also held by Jurassic World at $524.9 million — but there's still time for the final confirmed numbers to push Star Wars over the top. People outside of the US may simply prefer dinosaurs to spaceships, but part of the disparity can be attributed to the delayed launch of the movie in China, removing the potential for a solid financial contribution from moviegoers in the growing market.
Although The Force Awakens grabbed the biggest single day launch ever, Jurassic World also maintained its claw grip on the largest Saturday and Sunday totals, and the new Star Wars is still some way off the domestic total box office record of $760.5 million, held by Avatar. But projections indicate that it could well supersede that total, riding the holiday wave to reach upwards of $800 million in the domestic market. From there, it's still a long way to hit the worldwide lifetime total box office record of $2.78 billion — also held by Avatar — but based on its stellar performance, if anything can do it, it's likely to be Star Wars.
Update 10:55AM ET: Disney Chairman told Bloomberg TV this morning that The Force Awakens' worldwide opening total now stands at $528 million, putting the film's earnings right above Jurassic World's in the international market.
The Force Awakens Our first reactions
For more on The Force Awakens, check out The Verge's Star Wars playlist on Youtube, which includes Every time Chewbacca speaks in Star Wars and your chance to have BB-8 patrol your home. Make sure to subscribe to The Verge's YouTube channel and be sure to check out our roundtable discussion on The Force Awakens. Be warned: There are spoilers.