After getting off to a $92 million start in just its first day of release, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 was destined for big things. Or maybe I should say the biggest things. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 is now the record holder for biggest opening weekend box office, of all time.
As the numbers are rolling in this Sunday afternoon it’s not even close. Deathly Hallows 2 made $168.55 million over the three-day weekend, marking the biggest opening weekend in the history of movies. It smashed the previous record held by The Dark Knight, which earned $158.4 million on its first weekend back in 2008.
No other Harry Potter movie has even come close to this kind of box office total. The previous top Potter earner was Deathly Hallows 1, which made around $125 million over the course of its opening weekend last year.
Internationally Deathly Hallows 2 has already nearly tripled those massive domestic totals. All told worldwide, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 has made a massive $476 million around the globe.
Deathly Hallows 2 was almost certainly helped by those higher 3D ticket prices. Though all indications were that Potter fans wanted to see the final movie the way they’d seen all the rest, in 2D, we’ve heard numerous reports from Potter-faithful around the country who were forced into buying those higher-priced 3D tickets simply because they were quite literally the only thing available. Many Harry Potter fans may not have wanted to see the final film in 3D, but a lot of them simply had no other choice. That translated into easy money for Warner Brothers.
Even though Deathly Hallows 2 is playing to sold out shows all around the world, and even though it’s made more money than any other film in recent history, it hasn’t eclipsed the actual attendance of non-3D record holders like The Dark Knight. Box Office Mojo has crunched the numbers to adjust for higher ticket prices and inflation, and they report that though Deathly Hallows 2’s opening weekend is number one in terms of sheer box office dollars, it’s only sixth all time in terms of attendance. Non-3D films The Dark Knight, Spider-Man 3, The Twilight Saga: New Moon, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, and the original Spider-Man were all seen by more people. They just didn’t charge as much for their tickets.
Check out the full Weekend Box Office chart here.