‘Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows’ Dominates Weekend Box Office

Seventh 'Potter' film conjures up a magical $125.1 million debut, best opening in franchise's history.

Although Harry, Ron and Hermione have yet to secure all the weapons necessary in their impending battle against He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, they’ve already raised a significant amount of funds for the first half of their two-part war against the Dark Lord: To the surprise of absolutely nobody, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1″ is a magical success.

The first half of “Deathly Hallows” premiered in theaters this weekend with all of the explosive wonder that fans have come to expect from the “Harry Potter” franchise. With an estimated $125.1 million earned across roughly 4,125 locations, “Deathly Hallows” enjoyed the best opening weekend of any previous “Harry Potter” film, easily stealing the record from “Goblet of Fire,” which earned $102.7 million in 2005.

Not only does “Deathly Hallows” mark a new franchise high, it’s also the sixth-biggest opening weekend of all time, sitting comfortably alongside such cinematic titans as “The Dark Knight” ($158.4 million), “Spider-Man 3″ ($151 million), “The Twilight Saga: New Moon” ($142.8 million), “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” ($135.6 million) and “Iron Man 2″ ($128.1 million).

Despite its successes, however, “Deathly Hallows” was unable to wrest away the record set by “New Moon” for best November weekend of all time, falling short by nearly $20 million. “New Moon” also remains the third-highest-grossing opening weekend of all time, giving “Twilight” the edge over “Harry Potter” — for now, at least, as next summer’s “Deathly Hallows” conclusion is poised to break all kinds of records.

“Deathly Hallows” wasn’t the only film in theaters this weekend, not that you would have noticed; the film outpaced the combined total of the four remaining top five competitors by a massive $80.1 million margin. Indeed, the only other movie to hit wide release this weekend was “The Next Three Days,” and despite the star power of Russell Crowe, the Lionsgate thriller landed poorly in fifth place with $6.8 million.

The Box-Office Top Five

#1 “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” ($125.1 million)
#2 “Megamind” ($16.2 million)
#3 “Unstoppable” ($13.1 million)
#4 “Due Date” ($9.2 million)
#5 “The Next Three Days” ($6.8 million)

Upcoming Releases

Several newcomers are entering the box-office arena as “Deathly Hallows” looks to continue its domination next weekend: Dwayne Johnson returns to kicking butt and taking names in “Faster,” Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi tell fairy tales in Disney’s “Tangled,” Christina Aguilera and Cher dance off in “Burlesque” and Jake Gyllenhaal enjoys “Love and Other Drugs” with Anne Hathaway.

Check out everything we’ve got on “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1.”

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