‘Harry Potter’ Has Richest Opening Weekend Ever

It looks like Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 has broken the record for biggest opening weekend. The film brought in an estimated $168 million this weekend, according to Exhibitor Relations.

That bests the previous title holder, The Dark Knight, by $10 million.

The movie also now holds the record for the biggest single day at the box office. Harry Potter earned $92 million on Friday. That record had previously been held by Twilight: New Moon which earned $72 million, according to Box Office Mojo.

How many more record will Harry Potter break? The movie seems poised to earn at least $1 billion (it has already earned $325 million at the global box office). But it’s unlikely to topple Avatar as the top-grossing film of all time. That movie earned $2.7 billion at the global box office.

Of course when talking about records, it’s always worth taking into consideration the effects of inflation and 3-D ticket hikes. Just check out this story I wrote in February 2010. It includes a list of the highest-grossing films when adjusted for inflation. Gone With the Wind earned an inflation adjusted $1.48 billion domestically compared to Avatar‘s $760 million.

Not everyone agrees with adjusting for inflation though. As my colleague Mark Hughes commented on one of my recent stories:

But at the end of the day, what we have left is that any film accomplished what it did in the context of its time and environment, and we can really only judge them on their own merits, for their own box office, compared to its place among films right here right now.

Words that probably ring true for every Harry Potter fan.

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