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We’re now less than six months away from Star Wars: The Force Awakens (I may or may not have just squealed a little), and while that’s still a good distance out, it’s apparently never too early to start predicting the box office haul for the most anticipated movie in a year full of anticipated movies. As you probably guessed, the potential numbers are rather staggering, and if it follows this path, it could wind up as the third highest grossing movie of all time.
According to Deadline, an analyst at Morgan Stanley, Benjamin Swinburne, predicts that, when the J.J. Abrams-directed Star Wars: The Force Awakens opens this December, it will earn a whopping $1.95 billion at the box office. If this comes to pass, the seventh Star Wars film would wind up behind only Avatar and Titanic, which earned $2.7 billion and $2.1 billion respectively, in all time box office totals.
The figure of $1.95 billion is actually up a substantial 22% from Swinburne’s earlier predictions. Something he saw in the potential overseas sales led him to adjust his numbers. Geographically, his breakdown assumes that domestic audiences will drop roughly $650 million at theaters for The Force Awakens, while, in his estimation, the increasingly important global market will account for $1.3 billion of the total. These projections take into account the overwhelming success earlier-in-the-year blockbusters have had overseas, including Furious 7, which earned $1.1 billion outside the U.S. (more than three times what it took in at home), and Avengers: Age of Ultron, which raked in $918 million in international markets.
Swinburne also breaks down how profitable he expects The Force Awakens to be overall. He examines production and marketing costs, profit sharing, and also takes into account tie-in products, home video, and that sort of thing. We all know Star Wars knows how to merchandise. As dry as it sounds, it’s an interesting breakdown if you’re curious about that side of the business. Any way you slice it, Disney, Lucasfilm, and everyone involved stands to make a ridiculous amount of money.
We know Star Wars: The Force Awakens brings back a bunch of familiar characters, like Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca, and more, but it also adds a number of new faces. The biggest additions appear to be Finn (John Boyega), Rey (Daisy Ridley), Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), but there are more, including Captain Phasma (Gwendoline Christie), Maz Kanata (Lupita Nyong’o), Supreme Leader Snope (Andy Serkis), and more we’ll learn about when we sit down in the theater on December 18.