That's no moon, but the record $153.5 million J.J. Abrams' "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" made at the U.S. box office over the Christmas weekend, good for a first-place finish in its second week of release, is a feat that could only be eclipsed by the film's other stratospheric accomplishments, like becoming the fastest movie to ever surpass $1 billion in global gross, or shattering the previous Christmas Day revenue record by double, or ushering in its parent studio's first $2 billion annual domestic campaign.
According to TheWrap, second place in the crowded weekend at the box office went to "Daddy’s Home," the Will Ferrell/Mark Wahlberg team-up whose $38.8 million would be normally have been near to a record.
David O. Russell’s "Joy" placed third, making $17.5 million. "Concussion," the NFL-head-trauma medical drama starring Will Smith, "The Big Short," the real estate-crisis farce adapted from the book by "Moneyball” and "The Blind Side" author Michael Lewis, "Sisters," starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, the latest "Alvin and the Chipmunks" installment and the "Point Break" remake all made over $10 million.
Despite a limited release and stipulations that it be screened in 70mm, Quentin Tarantino's "The Hateful Eight" broke the top 10 with a $4.5 million haul in 100 theaters, placing behind "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 2."
The $153.5 million weekend for "Star Wars" brings its domestic total to $544.6 million, leading some to speculate that the franchise reboot has a chance to eventually surpass the $1 billion threshold in the U.S. alone. "The Force Awakens" brought in $133 million overseas over the weekend, and has earned $1.09 billion worldwide in the twelve days since its initial release, besting the mark set earlier this year when "Jurassic World" took 13 days to move into ten-digit-earnings.
Overall, "Episode VII" made $286.5 million globally this weekend. As the record-setting accomplishments mount, there's only one thing left to say to those skeptical of Disney and Abrams's efforts to revitalize the beloved Lucasfilm franchise--