Skip to main content

Star Wars: The Force Awakens dethrones Avatar for domestic box office record

Star Wars The Force Awakens
Star Wars: The Force Awakens wasn’t exactly a dark horse when it opened in theaters, but the size and speed of its success have still been astounding. Case in point: On Wednesday, just 20 days after its release, the latest installment in the Star Wars franchise topped Avatar to become the all-time highest-grossing film at the domestic box office, according to Deadline.

Topping Avatar is impressive in itself — the film has been holding competition at bay for almost six years — but doing it in less than three weeks is even more so. By comparison, Avatar took 318 days (including a special re-release in the summer of 2010) to reach its now-broken record of $760.6 million. With The Force Awakens still early in its theatrical run, it’s hard to believe just how high its numbers will potentially climb.

Related Videos

As Deadline points out, The Force Awakens has had a few notable advantages compared to Avatar, though. James Cameron’s 2009 film came at a time in which there were fewer 3D and digital screens, whereas Episode VII has had the benefit of such technology, not to mention higher ticket prices. Still, that shouldn’t take away from the J.J. Abrams film: The Force Awakens has been so well-received that a whopping 42 percent of moviegoers said they intended to see the flick in theaters again, according to a survey by Fandango.

Episode VII has been leaving a bevy of broken records in its wake, even in the days prior to its release. The film has done everything from reach new ticket pre-sale milestones to have the biggest preview and opening day in U.S. box office history.

It remains to be seen how long The Force Awakens can maintain its massive momentum, but its performance so far has been out of this galaxy.

Editors' Recommendations

The Mandalorian season 3: everything you need to know
The Mandalorian in a blue background from the series on Disney+.

After more than two years off the air, The Mandalorian is about to be back in our lives. The show, which proved that doing Star Wars on TV was possible and helped make Disney+ into the successful streamer it is today, has been gone for some time. Of course, just because the show is gone doesn't mean that nothing has happened to Grogu and Mando since we last saw them.

Whether you're planning to jump into The Mandalorian for the first time when it returns or just need a refresher on everything that's going on in the Star Wars universe, Digital Trends has you covered.

Read more
The 10 most popular movies of all time, ranked by box office gross
The cast of Star Wars.

There are many reasons why a film can become hugely popular. It could be a creative and thrilling story, awe-inspiring and innovative visuals, compelling characters, or enthralling performances from the cast.

But when all these factors come together, they can make a film that resonates with countless audiences and wins even bigger at the box office. While Hollywood has released many worldwide hits over the years, a select few movies hit the exactright mark in theaters, cementing themselves as cinematic juggernauts.

Read more
Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 coming to Disney+ in May
Logo for Star Wars Visions.

Disney and Lucasfilm have announced that Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 will premiere on May 4 on Disney+. May 4 is Star Wars Day, which is known for the catchphrase, "May the 4th be with you."

Star Wars: Visions is an animated anthology series that includes short films set in or inspired by the Star Wars universe. These films can exist outside of the Star Wars canon, but they still capture the themes and emotions of the Lucasfilm franchise. The series offers a global perspective on Star Wars, as Volume 2 will consist of nine short films from nine studios from around the world. Lucasfilm also revealed that each short film features unique animation styles.

Read more