Box Office News

'Harry Potter' to Cast Massive Box Office Spell!

Nov 18, 2010 | 10:05pm EST

058894H1.jpgA boy wizard is set to cast a box office spell this weekend as ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1’ prepares to unleash the magic.

The beginning of the end is at hand as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 kicks off the two part denouement of the most successful movie franchise of all-time.  As if there is any doubt as to what will be the No. 1 film this weekend, Warner Bros.’ latest release looks to conjure opening weekend numbers approaching $120 million and possibly higher and in the process set a new ‘Potter’ record.  2005’s Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is the only film in the series thus far to open in excess of $100 million having earned $102.7 million in its first three days back in 2005.  A true “event” film in every sense of the word, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 will draw massive crowds to the multi-plex as this decade-long, epic adventure draws to close.  A great marketing campaign, off-the-chart audience awareness, midnight showings and a record number of IMAX screens, ensure that this weekend will see 'Potter Mania' hit a fever pitch.  

Check out our exclusive 'Harry Potter' themed comic strip from Francesco Marciuliano.  Francesco writes the internationally-syndicated comic strip “Sally Forth” and the webcomic “Medium Large.” He was the head writer for the PBS series “SeeMore’s Playhouse,” for which one of his episodes won two 2007 Daytime Emmys. He currently writes for the Onion News Network.


Paramount’s release of the Dreamworks’ animated Megamind should take the second spot with around $18 million and a third weekend drop in the mid-30 percent range.  Timing is everything and the film enjoyed two solid weeks at the top of the charts in a Potter-less marketplace and a voracious family audience hungry for kid appropriate movie-going fun.  As its crosses the $100 million mark this weekend, Megamind holds the distinction of being the first blockbuster of the 2010 holiday movie season.  

In third with around $12 million expect last weekend’s second place finisher Unstoppable from Twentieth Century Fox.  Denzel Washington and Tony Scott have re-teamed for the fifth time in this runaway train action film that uses the director’s signature visual style to full effect.  The star power of Washington and his draw for older movie-goers means that this should have a modest sub-50 percent second weekend drop and bring the film to around $40 million by Sunday night.

Fourth place should belong to the Todd Phillips comedy Due Date which incidentally has been the No. 1 film in the international marketplace for the past two weeks.  A likely drop in the mid-50% range will generate third weekend revenues in the sub $10 million range with domestic revenues nearing the $70 million mark.  Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis as mismatched travel companions on a road trip from hell have made this R-rated comedy a solid holiday season hit.

Morning Glory from Paramount should scoop up fifth place with a second weekend gross of around $5 million and a post-weekend total nearing $20 million.  The Harrison Ford, Rachel McAdams romantic comedy debuted on a Wednesday and then took the fifth spot last weekend with $9.2 million and a first five day total of $11.8 million.  

Comparisons to last year’s comparable weekend will be very interesting considering that Twilight: New Moon posted the single biggest opening day gross in history with $72.7 million and went on to post the third biggest opening weekend of all-time with a whopping $142.8 million!

With the release of Harry Potter 7, the holiday movie season will hit its stride and with just 7 weekends remaining in the box office year of 2010 we aim toward the possibility of the first $11 billion box office year.

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