Update: Article updated with final box office data.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 exceeded expectations to gross $71.64M Friday — the third-highest opening day ever behind “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 ($91.1M / with a record $43.6M from midnights) and “The Twilight Saga: New Moon ($72.7M).
Midnights accounted for $30.25M of Friday’s grosses, a new franchise-best (easily surpassing ‘New Moon’s’ $26.3M midnight figure). Although ‘New Moon’ remains franchise leader for biggest single day, ‘Breaking Dawn Part 1′ is 2nd all-time for the franchise [via BOM]:
|1||The Twilight Saga: New Moon||11/20/2009||$72,703,754|
|2||The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1||11/18/2011||$71,642,526
|3||The Twilight Saga: Eclipse||6/30/2010||$68,533,840|
‘Breaking Dawn Part 1′ added $40.03M on Saturday (-44%) and $26.45M on Sunday (-34%) for a 3-day opening weekend of $138.12M. That puts the film fifth place on the all-time opening weekend chart [BOM]:
|1||Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2||7/15/2011||$169,189,427|
|2||The Dark Knight||7/18/2008||$158,411,483
|4||The Twilight Saga: New Moon||11/21/2008||$142,839,137|
|5||The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1
Foreign grosses have tallied an even stronger $144.0M for a worldwide total of $282.12M.
Rounding out the top five for the weekend were The 3D Happy Feet Two debuting in second place with $21.24M from 3,606 theaters; Immortals dropping to third place with $12.35M from 3,120 theaters ($53.08M 10-day total); Jack and Jill dropping to fourth place with $11.74M from 3,438 ($40.77M 10-day total) and Puss in Boots in fifth place with $10.80M from 3,415 theaters ($122.39M 24-day total).
Fox Searchlight’s The Descendants opened in limited release in just 29 theaters but grossed a very respectable $1.29M for a box office best per theater average of $41,038 (better than ‘Breaking Dawn’s’ $34,012).