Harry Potter crushes Twilight’s records with help of online tickets

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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 raked in an astounding $42.5 million dollars early Friday morning with all the midnight showings playing around the United States. This removes The Twilight Saga: Eclipse from the record books as it sold $30 million in ticket sales for midnight showings. It’s also on track to destroy the record for single day ticket sales ($72 million) held by The Twilight Saga: New Moon as well as the three-day domestic record ($158 million) held by Nolan’s The Dark Knight. Potter also raked in $82.5 million dollars internationally as well. Critical response to the film is overwhelmingly positive on Rotten Tomatoes clocking in at 97 percent fresh.

potter-fansThese record-breaking numbers were helped along by online ticket sales on the 45 days leading up to the launch of the film. Fandango helped more than 6000 showtimes sell out of tickets for the midnight screenings. That single movie accounted for 93 percent of sales for Friday and Fandango takes in a $1.25 convenience charge on each ticket sold. Movietickets.com reported selling more tickets for the opening day of Harry Potter than all the tickets sold for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. Online ticket sales amounting to $32 million dollars, thus the previous box office record was already broken before  Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 was even released.

Potter also received a tremendous boost from social media. With 29 million fans on the official Harry Potter Facebook page, Warner Brothers used the page to post images from the film as well as behind-the-scenes video clips. The studio also allowed Facebook fans to rent and view the movies through the social networking site and purchase tickets directly through Facebook. Warner Brothers used similar tactics on Twitter by publishing live photos from the movie premiere on the official Twitter page @harrypotterfilm as well as posting more exclusive interviews with the actors of the films on the official YouTube channel.

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