When comparing the earnings of different franchises, it’s always important to realize that each has a different background and a different number of entries. Harry Potter, for instance, had the best-selling book series of all time and seven (ok, eight) films built in when the inevitably adaption rolled around. With a spin-off series well under way, the world of wizards was the non-superhero champion of the box office - until now.
The Last Jedi pushed Star Wars over the hump to second place on the all-time franchise earning board over at Box Office Mojo. Sure it’s still behind Marvel, but that series has a staggering 18 films and counting. Star Wars is at a mere eight main films, along with Rogue One and an animated Clone Wars film.
The really impressive (or scary) thing is that Disney now owns the two top-selling movie franchises of all time. Star Wars has already paid for itself. It certainly helps when a franchise’s return is an all-time record-breaker, but it’s also impressive that the franchise has had such longevity.
Star Wars made its $8,572,623,930 over the course of 41 years while Marvel has been jamming out movies to the same fanbase (to the tune of $13,505,871,829) for just the past decade. JK Rowling’s wizarding world accomplished the same from 2001 - 2011, raking in $8,539,253,704 - a number, you might note, is a few dozen million less than the total of Star Wars.
With Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald coming in November, these two franchises look to be neck and neck for the foreseeable future if their release schedules keep pace.