A hotly anticipated movie that launched over the weekend did huge business at the box office, chalking up the second-biggest December opening weekend of all time. Variety reports that “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” delivered a $155 million weekend in North America along with $290.5 million in global receipts.
The numbers demonstrated the continued box office appeal of the “Star Wars” franchise, which also produced the biggest December opening of all time — last year’s launch of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” which posted a North American opening of $248 million.
The report quotes Jeff Bock, a box office analyst with Exhibitor Relations, saying of “Star Wars”: “This is the king of all franchises. No other franchise is even close.”
Variety notes: “Disney, which shelled out $4 billion to buy ‘Star Wars’ creator Lucasfilm in 2012, had been trying to downplay expectations for ‘Rogue One.’ Executives noted that the film is the first ‘Star Wars’ movie to exist outside of the main Skywalker clan storyline. It’s also a darker, war-themed tale — one that has an unusually high body count for a popcorn flick. The film follows a group of rebels on a suicide mission to steal plans for a deadly space station.”