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Star Wars: The Force Awakens takes record $88.3m in US over New Year weekend

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Story by Jack Foley

THE records continue to tumble for Star Wars: The Force Awakens in the US. JJ Abrams’ box office juggernaut has continued to set the box office ablaze, taking a whopping $88.3 million over New Year’s weekend.

The film has now taken $740.3 million in the US alone and $1.51 billion globally for Disney and Lucasfilm. Back in the US, it’s the biggest third weekend in history for any film.

And thanks to the continued success of the seventh instalment in the George Lucas-created franchise, US box office revenue hit a record $11 billion in 2015, while global revenue crossed $38 billion for the first time in history.

That figure was buoyed by summer successes such as Jurassic World and Fast & Furious 7, not to mention late autumn box office hits such as Spectre and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2. But the record breaking capability of The Force Awakens ensured that these records were set.

Furthermore, The Force Awakens is days away from overtaking James Cameron’s Avatar ($760.8 million) to become the top-grossing film of all time in the US, not accounting for inflation. It should achieve the milestone sometime on Tuesday or Wednesday this week.

Internationally, The Force Awakens also extended its dominance, earning $96.3 million over the weekend for a foreign total of $770.5 million.

On Saturday, it also leapt past Avengers: Age of Ultron ($1.41 billion) to claim the sixth spot on the list of all-time top-grossing films.

And it has more records in sight in various European territories, with the UK leading the way with $145 million. It has now passed Spectre ($138.3 million) to score the second-best showing of all time behind Skyfall ($161 million). But James Bond’s reign looks to be in serious jeopardy.

Back in the US, there were some other notable box office holds for some of the other films released over the holiday period. Mark Wahlberg-Will Ferrell comedy vehicle Daddy’s Home stayed at No. 2 throughout the holiday period, closing New Year’s weekend with $29 million for a US total of $93.7 million – and that’s despite lukewarm reviews.

Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight charged to third spot upon expanding nationwide midweek, earning $16.2 million for the weekend and $29.6 million to date.

While Universal’s R-rated comedy Sisters, starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, placed fourth with $15.6 million for a US total of $61.7 million

Rounding out the top five, meanwhile, was Alvin & The Chipmunks: The Road Chip, which took $11.8 million for a US total of $67.4 million.

The big disappointment was the big-budget Point Break remake, an extreme sports based loose remake of the 1991 cult classic. The movie, which cost at least $100 million to make, placed ninth for the weekend with just $6.8 million for a seriously low US total of $22.4 million.

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