It’s mid-December, which means it’s Disney’s Star Wars time. Rogue One marks the first Star Wars movie that’s outside of the sagas you might be used to. Disney’s first “Star Wars story” is already a hit with critics, and it’s already a huge money-maker. Star Wars fans spent no less than $290.5 million during the opening weekend, making Rogue One one of the most successful movies of the year.
Rogue One scored $155 million in ticket sales in North America, Variety reports, which makes it the second-largest December opening in history, and the second-largest launch of the year. What’s even more impressive about that $290.5 international box office purse for the first weekend is that it doesn’t include China and South Korea. The movie is yet to launch in these two important movie markets.
In the US, Rogue One made $19 million in Imax and $17.9 million in premium large formats. Overall, 38% of all tickets sold were for 3D screenings.
“This is the king of all franchises,” Exhibitor Relations analyst Jeff Bock told Variety. “No other franchise is even close.”
“It reinforces how meaningful the brand is that in the midst of all the pre-holiday distractions and the bad weather, the film was still able to pull everybody into the theater in a big way,” Disney’s distribution chief Dave Hollis said.
Disney tried to downplay expectations for the movie ahead of its debut, fully aware that a story not centered on the Skywalker family might not be that appealing to fans.
Rogue One had no real competition at the box office, to begin with. Moana raked in $11.7 million ($161.9 million in total for the animation), Office Party earned $8.4 million ($31.5 million since debut), Will Smith’s Collateral Beauty opened at $7 million, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them scored $5 million this weekend (bringing its total up to $207.7 million).