Disney’s first full trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens debuted last week during halftime on ESPN’s Monday Night Football, where it was seen by a TV audience of 16 million. When it was released on YouTube and social networks worldwide, another 112 million people watched it, for a total of 128 million global views in the first 24 hours.
The franchise’s official website also reports that the latest Star Wars film, the seventh overall, broke records for most advance ticket sales in numerous countries, including over 200,000 in the U.K on the first day. Several movie ticket websites succumbed to the dark side, and either slowed or crashed.
150 lucky fans were invited to the Juyongguan section of the great Wall of China, where 500 stormtrooper figurines and four Chinese characters reading “The Force Awakens” were lit up to celebrate the trailer.
According to Deadline, The new Star Wars trailer increased ESPN’s MNF ratings by 13 percent, with the audience peaking 15 minutes before it debuted. This was icing on the cake for Disney, which owns 80 percent of ESPN.
However, despite its immense popularity, The Force Awakens trailer failed to topple the current record-holder for views. Universal Pictures’ Furious 7 trailer was viewed 100 million times on Facebook alone within its first 48 hours. It should be noted that while Disney used MNF to launch the trailer, Universal used Facebook. The day after its release, The Force Awakens trailer had about 8 million views. Currently, the trailer for Fast 7 is up to 64 million views since its release last November, while that of The Force Awakens is approaching 46 million.
The initial numbers are only part of the story. When it comes to YouTube, the galaxy far, far away has 900,000 subscribers, while Vin Diesel and his pals come in second at 825,000.
The first Force Awakens teaser was released in November 2014, commanding 55 million views in first day, while the second one from April this year got 88 million views.
The J.J. Abrams-directed Force Awakens will be released in the U.S. on December 18.