20 Highest Grossing Opening Weekends of All-Time

The opening weekend is a crucial moment for a movie’s success, determining if it will be a bonafide blockbuster or a regular old bust. Ever since Spider-Man became the first movie to gross $100 million in a single weekend, the biggest opening weekend has become one of Hollywood’s most coveted records.

20
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 ($125,017,372)
The final book in the Harry Potter series was controversially split into two films. Fan opinion on the split is... well, split, but the box office numbers speak for themselves: the final two movies posted the best opening weekends of the whole franchise.
19
Iron Man 2 ($128,122,480)
The third film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (after 2008's Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk) established the series as a blockbuster mainstay which would go onto gross over $9 billion worldwide, the highest total of a single franchise.
18
Deadpool ($132,434,639)
The Merc with a Mouth became the first R-rated movie to gross over $100 million in its opening weekend, breaking the thirteen year old record held by The Matrix Reloaded.
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17
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest ($135,634,554)
The follow up to the 2006 smash hit Pirates of the Caribbean, Dead Man's Chest boasts the best opening weekend for the series. However, much like the movie itself, the franchise has gone on a bit too long.
16
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part One ($138,122,261)
While Deadpool is the only R-rated film on this list, it was almost joined by Breaking Dawn - Part One. Originally, the sex scene between Edward and Bella was so graphic, the movie was given an R-rating. However, the scene was re-edited and the rating was changed to PG-13.
15
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part Two ($141,067,634)
Breaking Dawn - Part Two boasted the series' highest budget at $75 million. Speaking of money, director Bill Condon set up a swear jar on the set (to protect the innocent ears of 12 year old actress Mackenzie Foy). At the end of production, the money collected was donated to St. Jude's Children Hospital.
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14
The Twilight Saga: New Moon ($142,839,137)
Robert Pattinson has said that New Moon was his favorite book in the series and fans would apparently agree. The second movie posted the franchises' best opening weekend, helped in part to some clever marketing. The film debuted on November 16th 2009, the same day as an actual new moon.
13
Furious 7 ($147,163,560)
After the death of actor Paul Walker, the future of the Fast and the Furious franchise was put into question. However, when Furious 7 was released, those doubts were put to rest. The movie became the highest grossing film in the Fast and the Furious franchise, the sixth highest grossing film of all-time, and the fastest movie to ever reach $1 billion worldwide (its 17 day record was later beat by Jurassic World).
12
Spider-Man 3 ($151,116,516)
Spider-Man 3 topped the $100 million mark originally established by Spider-Man, but its box office success couldn't save the franchise. Due to creative difference with director Sam Raimi, Sony Pictures shelved plans for two additional sequels and instead decided to reboot the franchise with Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker.
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11
The Hunger Games ($152,535,747)
For all intents and purposes, The Hunger Games was an indie blockbuster. It was the first movie not released by one of the "Big 6" movie studios (Fox, Disney, Paramount, Warner Brothers, Columbia, and Universal) to gross over $400 million domestically.
10
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire ($158,074,286)
For her role in the original Hunger Games, Jennifer Lawrence was paid $500,000. By the time Catching Fire was in production, her paycheck had increased to $10 million.
9
The Dark Knight ($158,411,483)
The followup to Batman Begins was so good the Academy Awards had to change their Best Picture nomination process. Heath Ledger, who passed away before the movie was released, even received an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.
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8
The Dark Knight Rises ($160,887,295)
The Dark Knight Rises owes its opening weekend success to the overwhelming critical acclaim of The Dark Knight. Unfortunately, the movie's premiere was overshadowed by a tragic movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado.
7
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 ($169,189,427)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 broke the previous record for biggest opening weekend like Harry broke the Elder Wand.
6
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice ($170,100,000)
The only thing more unnecessarily long than Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was the title of the film. While reviews of the movie have been less than stellar (cue Sound of Silence), word of mouth hasn't hurt it at the box office. While Batman v Superman ranks below three Marvel films, it has nabbed the top spot amongst its DC counterparts.
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5
Iron Man 3 ($174,144,585)
Iron Man 3 remains the best opening weekend for a standalone Marvel film and the third highest overall.
4
Avengers: Age Of Ultron ($191,271,109)
For a while, Marvel boasted the top three highest grossing opening weekends of all-time with The AvengersThe Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Iron Man 3.
3
The Avengers ($207,438,708)
Marvel's The Avengers became the first movie to gross more than $200 million in an opening weekend, shattering the record previously held by Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II.
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2
Jurassic World ($208,806,270)
In 2015, Jurassic World snatched the record from The Avengers, but Marvel had a good attitude about the situation. On Twitter, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige posted a photo of Jurassic World star Chris Pratt riding a T-Rex as the Avengers look on in confusion.
1
Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($247,966,675)
In late 2015, Star Wars Episode VII shattered several box office record becoming the highest grossing Disney film of all-time and the fastest movie to reach $1 billion worldwide, which it accomplished in only 12 days.

All data courtesy of The Numbers.

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