“Harry Potter” has been a billion dollar moneymaker for Warner Bros. since the first film, “The Sorcerer’s Stone,” debuted nine years ago. After Friday’s tallies at the box office, the studio is no doubt thrilled and perhaps a bit melancholy the magical tale is going out with such a big bang.
The second to last film in the franchise, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt. 1,” opened to a massive $61.2 million on Friday. That is the fifth biggest single day debut of all time behind “The Twilight Saga: New Moon,” “Eclipse,” “The Dark Knight” and “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.” It’s unclear just how high “Hallows” take will go over the three-day, but its looking like a minimum of $130 million at this point with $140 million a strong possibility.
The rest of the top five found “Unstoppable” in the second slot with another $4 million for an eight-day cume of $32.9 million. “Megamind” was third with $3.7 million and a two week total of $97 million. Fourth place went to the Robert Downey, Jr. comedy “Due Date” which grossed $2.9 million for $66.4 million to date.
In fifth, the Russell Crowe thriller “The Next Three Days” was a huge disappointment for Lionsgate Friday with just $2.2 million in receipts. The Paul Haggis directed flick is projecting at a weekend gross of $6-7 million weekend at best.
Look for updated weekend estimates Sunday on HitFix.