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How Does The Dark Knight Rises Box Office Compare To The Dark Knight?

For weeks after the shootings in Aurora, Colorado, industry executives and the media alike avoided talking too much about how the tragedy affected the box office for The Dark Knight Rises, the movie that was playing when James Holmes opened fire in a crowded movie theater. But as we move on from the event, and Holmes's monstrous act gets further separated from the film itself, those keeping an eye on The Dark Knight Rises can't help but notice that the movie, while massive, just can't keep pace with its predecessor. And now, finally, Warner Bros. has made the connection they've avoided for so long.

When asked whether the shooting has affected the grosses for The Dark Knight Rises, Warner Bros. executive Jeff Goldstein told E! "there's no question about it." As of today The Dark Knight Rises has grossed $354 million domestically, and by hitting $350 million in just 17 days it's the third-fastest film to reach that landmark-- but The Dark Knight was second, doing it in 14 days. Box Office Mojo keeps track of a ton of stats like this, and in nearly all of them, The Dark Knight is ahead of its sequel-- it holds the record for non-opening Tuesday gross, for example, and has the third-highest second weekend, while The Dark Knight Rises comes in just 8th on that list.

You can blame a lot of factors when a sequel doesn't perform as well as its predecessor, and there's no denying that fan enthusiasm for The Dark Knight Rises is more muted than it was last time. But the clearest evidence of how Aurora has affected American moviegoers comes from looking at the international box office; The Dark Knight Rises has made $378 million overseas, while according to E!, The Dark Knight had made $210 million internationally at this point in its release. Everywhere else in the world, The Dark Knight Rises is performing like a normal sequel, far outstripping the movie that came before it. But in America, it seems clear that moviegoers are still a little hesitant, and no matter how much they may be interested in the new Batman film, the lingering shadow of the Aurora shootings seems to be keeping them at home.

Katey Rich

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend