Much like sand, Star Wars is everywhere. There was The Force Awakens in 2015 and Rogue One in 2016, with The Last Jedi, the recently-titled Solo: A Star Wars Story, and Episode IX to come in 2017, 2018, and 2019, respectively. Excitement for the franchise is as high as it’s ever been (my theory for why that is: Porgs), and Disney is basically printing money. In fact, The Last Jedi, which comes out December 15, is on pace for the second highest-grossing opening weekend of all-time. What’s number one? The Force Awakens.
The team over at Box Office Pro has projected that the movie’s opening weekend will come in at some $215 million, which would place Rian Johnson‘s film firmly in the second place spot on the big list, right behind its predecessor, Star Wars: The Force Awakens. They also predict that the film’s domestic run will clock in around $742 million, just a little short of Avatar‘s $760 million take. (Via)
The Last Jedi is obviously going to make a ton of money and when’s all said and done, it will probably be the highest-grossing movie of 2017 (Beauty and the Beast currently leads the pack with $504 million), but it’s unlikely to top The Force Awakens. For one thing, Episode VII was a crowd-pleasing throwback to the original Star Wars, while The Last Jedi looks to be much darker; also, The Empire Strikes Back and Attack of the Clones didn’t make as much as their predecessors, likely for the same moody reason.
But a $215 million opening weekend (that’s $30 million less than The Force Awakens, but $7 million than the current runner-up, Jurassic World) and $742 million overall is nothing to be ashamed of. It’s enough money to pay for the 17 directors who will inevitably direct the Obi-Wan spin-off movie.