While The Last Jedi has tracked to be an absolute Death Star at the box office (yes, planet-destroyingly big), there was no way to know the exact extent of the financial haul until the real ticket numbers started BB-8 rolling in. Now, with Thursday’s launch in the cards, the figures are beginning to snap into focus.
The projections are pegging The Last Jedi to become one of the top five films of all time at the global box office, and Thursday's previews proved it could be on pace for that. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Episode VIII pulled in “a near-record $45 million in Thursday previews,” coming behind only The Force Awakens’ $57 million for the highest Thursday haul of all time.
The trade also notes that, once the final numbers are in, The Last Jedi could easily boot the final Harry Potter pic, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 2, as the runner-up for Thursday preview grosses; that film took in $43.5 million in 2011.
This puts The Last Jedi well on track to becoming year’s biggest box-office earner, and easily the biggest weekend opening for 2017. In terms of competition, Rian Johnson’s Star Wars sequel is only up against the animated kids' movie Ferdinand, so if someone other than a young parent is going to the movies, odds are it’ll be to see The Last Jedi.
If these projections hold, The Last Jedi is tracking to score upward of $425 million for the weekend, which would solidify its place in the top five film openings of all time. However, with good word of mouth and the tantalizing promise of plenty of twists, there’s lots of positive wiggle room for the film. Will it be enough to supplant its predecessor? Only the receipts on Monday will tell.