Harry Potter and the Box Office of Plenty

It's no big shock that the fourth entry in the "Harry Potter" series was, far and away, the number one draw at the weekend box office. But the flick turned out to have the fourth biggest box office weekend in the history of moviedom: Harry snagged over $101 million from nearly 3,900 North American screens ... in only three days!

Harry's big weekend falls right behind "Spider-Man," "Revenge of the Sith," and "Shrek 2" for biggest openings ever.

Checking in at second place with a distant (yet fairly impressive) $22.4 million was James Mangold's Johnny Cash biopic "Walk the Line," which did fine business from just under 3,000 screens.

The rest of the top five consisted of hangers-on, including Disney's "Chicken Little" ($14.7 million weekend; $99.1 million overall), the Weinsteins' "Derailed" ($6.5m, $21.8m), and Sony's "Zathura" ($5.1m, $20.2m).

But back to Mr. Potter for a second. Here's how Variety breaks down some of the magically delicious numbers:

""Potter's" perf shaved a point off the year's overall B.O. deficit compared with 2004; it now stands at 6%.

Despite the first PG-13 rating for a "Potter" pic, demos for "Goblet of Fire" were similar to 2004's "Azkaban." Kids made up 42% of the aud, with parents another 20% and non-family adults 38%.

"This is the biggest weekend in Warner Bros. history," noted WB distrib prexy Dan Fellman. "With three more (Potter pics) to go, we're looking forward to leaving more marks in the record books."

"Potter" reached the stratosphere without setting any one-day records. First-day take of $39.4 million does tie it with "Spider-Man" for the biggest Friday ever, but that's the seventh highest opening day in history.

In a promising sign for playability, "Goblet of Fire" declined only 10% to $35.5 million on Saturday.

The first three "Potter" pics bowed with, in order, $90.3 million, $88.4 million and $93.7 million, with the first two opening in November 2001 and 2002 and the third in June 2004.

"Goblet of Fire" made $2.8 million on 66 Imax screens over the weekend, giving it a per-play average of $42,951. That's the highest ever in the giant-screen format, just beating the $2.7 million record set by "The Polar Express.""

As is usually the case, the Wednesday before Thanksgiving offers a whole bunch of new cinematic choices. The day after tomorrow sees the release of New Line's rom-com "Just Friends," Sony's long-awaited cinematic version of "Rent," Focus' dark ensemble comedy "The Ice Harvest," the family farce "Yours, Mine and Ours," and a teen-centric crime comedy called "In the Mix."

For a closer look at Harry's magical box office spell, take a visit to the Rotten Tomatoes Box Office Page. (And have a great holiday weekend!)

Comments

Sergeant Grimm

Billy Davidson

Was anyone really expecting it to make 20 mill?

Nov 21 - 09:36 AM

foolofatook

Cory C

Honestly, I wasn't. I had it at around $17mil.

But frankly, I'm not that surprised at the $101mil GoF made. It'll be interesting to see how things fold out these next few weeks...

Nov 21 - 11:26 AM

foolofatook

Cory C

And for Zathura... ouch. Potter definitely had a hand in that.

Nov 21 - 11:27 AM

lovelykeira

Ken Schrock

Best Potter film yet, I still really want to see Walk the Line and am looking forward to Pride and Prejudice, Ice Harvest, and somewhat Just Friends.

Nov 21 - 12:50 PM

haelohm

Sean Collen

[b]OMGEEE[/b]
i loved the Harry Potter! it was amazing...oh and by the way it actually made 102.3 million...i saw it twice this weekend...the bigger screen the better! And i cant wait to see Walk the Line too!

Nov 21 - 03:15 PM

synergyred

Nancy Elizabeth

Really glad to see Potter did so well. I hope Rent gets up there as well. I know I'll be seeing that opening day!

Nov 21 - 03:19 PM

IMAmoose24

Eric Schulze

I have nothing against harry potter, but i would not see that movie opening day or opening weekend for that matter. It's too much of a hastle.Too many little kids running around and they wont be quiet. I was looking forward to walk the line all year and i was not dissapointed. The theater that it was showing in wasn't too bad either because everyone was seeing potter. Bottom line: See Walk The Line. Its one of the best films of the year no doubt in my mind.

Nov 21 - 07:12 PM

foolofatook

Cory C

While it may be a hassle to get in... surprisingly enough, I saw much fewer children this time around than I have in the past. I saw the film Friday night and Sunday afternoon, and both showings consisted of a large young adult - adult crowd. Shows that many of these people have grown with Potter and the films.

Nov 21 - 08:13 PM

inessalenin

Inessa Lenin

did you notice "the first PG-13 rating "?
It means there's not much children to yell or scream

Nov 28 - 08:30 AM

kenporules

Tim K

It's always nice to see a great movie that actually deserves money get business. People pay for any crap the commercials shove down their throats, and I think it's great that they take the time to make the Potter movies so good rather than releasing some mindless garbage that people will pay for anyway (I mean, just look at how the top box office results usually look on the tomatometer). Definitely isn't a kid's movie though... I bet some parents had some complaints after that.

Fortunately, there weren't any in our theater.

Nov 21 - 07:58 PM

foolofatook

Cory C

While it may be a hassle to get in... surprisingly enough, I saw much fewer children this time around than I have in the past. I saw the film Friday night and Sunday afternoon, and both showings consisted of a large young adult - adult crowd. Shows that many of these people have grown with Potter and the films.

Nov 21 - 08:13 PM

renny2077

Renny Abraham

Not surprised that GOF is doing so well. I'm gonna see it for a second time.

Nov 21 - 09:43 PM

HoneycombSAFARI

Daniel James

yeah the film was good, my fave in the series so far. I hate it when everyone says the film is "dark" and it turns out to be literally dark (ie: badly lit) but this was just right. I liked the satirical edge to it. I've only in the past few months been taking notice of box office results and since then, chicken little's $40 mil opening is the highest ive seen, so potter's debut came as a surprise. And a word for the critics out there: review a film upon the criteria on which it was made! Come on, I read reviews for House of Wax where it was compared to scream. While i loved both films, I can honestly say that they are essentially different genres. Scream was a witty satire of the horror genre and House of Wax was a goofy appreciation of the horror genre. Just because they are both denominations of the same genre doesnt mean they had the same goal. And while Scream may have been considered the "better" film, House of Wax had its own merits and never set out to be the next scream in the first place. So please when reviewing a film, take notice of the following:

1: was it entertaining?
2: Did it accomplish what it set out to do?
3: Has it reached it's target audience?
4: Were the production values good?

Not criticising it for not being what it never wanted to be!!!!

Nov 22 - 10:54 PM

inessalenin

Inessa Lenin

did you notice "the first PG-13 rating "?
It means there's not much children to yell or scream

Nov 28 - 08:30 AM

Shetye

akash shetye

[b]Not Supriesed[/b]
Not supriesed a bit

Jan 8 - 06:46 AM

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