New Harry Potter movie breaks box office records
“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One” made 125.1 million dollars in the United States and scored Britain’s biggest ever opening weekend with 28 million dollars, said Warner Brothers, the studio behind the franchise.
In Australia the movie made 15 million dollars while it earned 12 million in Russia — both the highest opening weekends of the Potter series, which will climax with the Part II of “Deathly Hallows” next year.
“This is truly a motion picture phenomenon, and it is just the beginning for the penultimate release of the franchise,” said Dan Fellman, head of US distribution.
Veronika Kwan-Rubinek, head of international distribution, added: “We are thrilled by the enthusiastic response of international audiences.
“It’s a testament to the extraordinary vision of J.K. Rowling; the talents of the filmmakers, cast and everyone involved in the production; and to the hard work of our distribution and marketing teams around the world.”
Industry daily the Hollywood Reporter hailed the latest Potter triumph.
“The box-office wizard has outdone himself,” it said, reporting the box office smash.
“‘Hallows: Part 1’ has a good shot at mounting a year’s-best theatrical run if the film maintains momentum through the upcoming Thanksgiving span and beyond,” it added, referring to the coming week’s annual US holiday.
In the new movie — the sixth and penultimate in the series — evil Lord Voldemort and his evil henchmen control huge swathes of the wizarding world and Harry is constantly in danger.
Harry, Hermione and Ron leave behind the safety of school and their families and set out alone to seek out horcruxes, items in which Voldemort has hidden pieces of his soul, so they can destroy them and ultimately bring him down.
Much of the film revolves around a road trip, as the trio travel around Britain to try to stay safe, and focuses on the close friendship between the main characters, in particular the budding romance between Hermione and Ron.
It ends on a cliffhanger, however, as the final resolution will not be known until Part Two, which is due out in July. That will cover a final, explosive battle between Potter and his allies and Voldemort’s dark forces.
In the United States, the Potter movie’s 125 million dollar take dwarfed the rest of the top 10 in box office tracker Exhibitor Relation’s weekly estimate of weekend takings.
Will Ferrell’s super-villain comedy “Megamind” came second with 16.2 million, followed by action movie “Unstoppable” starring Denzel Washington and Chris Pinewith on 13.1 million, and roadtrip comedy “Due Date” on 9.1 million.
“The Next Three Days” — the only other film in the top 5 on its opening week, starring Russell Crowe in a tale of how a married couple’s life is turned upside down when the wife is accused of murder — earned 6.75 million.
In sixth place in the US rankings was “Morning Glory,” a romantic comedy starring Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton and Rachel McAdams, with 5.2 million, followed by “Skyline” with 3.4 million and “Red” with 2.5 million.
Rounding out the top 10 were “For Colored Girls” on 2.4 million and “Fair Game” on 1.5 million.