'The Last Jedi' opens with $220M, 2nd best weekend all-time

  • This image released by Lucasfilm shows Daisy Ridley as Rey in "Star Wars: The Last Jedi." “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is off to a death star-sized start at the box office. Disney says Friday, Dec. 15, 2017, that eighth installment in the space franchise has earned an estimated $45 million from Thursday night showings. (Lucasfilm via AP)

Associated Press
Sunday, December 17, 2017

Star Wars: The Last Jedi will happily settle for second.

Rian Johnson’s second installment in the third “Star Wars” trilogy rocketed to a debut of $220 million at the North American box office, according to studio estimates Sunday. That gives The Last Jedi the second-best opening ever, slotting in behind only its predecessor, The Force Awakens.

The Disney blockbuster became just the fourth film to open above $200 million domestically. Aside from The Force Awakens ($248.8 million), the others are The Avengers ($207.4 million) and Jurassic World ($208.8 million). Accounting for inflation, the debut of 2012’s The Avengers would roughly tie with The Last Jedi.

The Last Jedi is off to a similar start overseas, too, with $230 million in international ticket sales, said Disney. That brings its three-day global haul to $450 million.

“The weekend that we’re in is a byproduct of the foresight and vision from our CEO Bob Iger to bring Lucasfilm into the fold,” said Disney distribution chief Dave Hollis, alluding to Disney’s 2012 purchase of Lucasfilm. “So as we think about the possibility of other things being added, you can’t help but be excited about the possibilities.”

Ferdinand, was essentially stampeded by The Last Jedi, grossing $13.3 million. Ferdinand and other upcoming holiday season releases will look for more room in the coming weeks, once the “Star Wars” tsunami has passed through.