Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Climbs to #4 On All Time Worldwide List

Star Wars: The Force Awakens continues to climb the box office worldwide chart having landed in the 4th spot after just a touch over two weeks of release with a worldwide total of $1.5B ($750.2M from US; $786.1M international). In the US it the film will sit at the top of the heap by the end of the week as its only $10.5M from passing Avatar's $760.5M US total. The continued climb was assisted by a strong third weekend of release with an $90.2M weekend in the US. The relatively small 39.5% drop (60% and up bad, around 50% average, 40% or less is good) indicates the film might cross the $900 million mark in the US.

The continued strong US showing is no longer being matched internationally as the film only took in around $14.5M for a significant 63% drop. While the US sales will easily allow the film to pass Jurassic World's $1.7B worldwide total, it will not be enough to push it over the top to pass Titanic ($2.2B) and Avatar ($2.8B). The only chance of that occurring is if China embraces the film when it is released this weekend in the country. Star Wars and China get along ok but it historically has not had significant support there but then again the last time that was tested was over 10 years ago with the prequels and the volume of Chinese moviegoers for American films was significantly smaller.

By my rough guess, the movie would have to break the Chinese single weekend box office record (currently Furious 7 at $182.4) to boost the film enough to pass Titanic. Most American releases in China only are allowed a few weeks of release which is why despite the strong first weekend, the total gross for Furious 7 was $390.9M. Assuming the laws there have not changed that indicates a record weekend for the movie (~200M+) with the limited release window would put the film at ~$500M from China. Assuming that best case scenario here is my guesstimate on where The Force Awakens might land on worldwide gross: ~$500M China + ~$900M US + ~$850 rest of world = ~$2.25B worldwide total which is enough to pass Titanic but not Avatar. Oddly my guess seems to match what the paid professionals say.

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