The newest installment of the Star Wars franchise is breaking records before it even hits theaters on December 18.
Despite encountering a new round of racist backlash on Monday via #BoycottStarWarsVII on Twitter, Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens is dominating the pre-sale box office. The first full trailer for The Force Awakens premiered during an ESPN football game broadcast (ESPN is owned by Walt Disney (DIS), which also owns the Star Wars franchise), and the movie's pre-sale launched at the same time.
Alamo Drafthouse, theater chain AMC (AMC) and Fandango—a Comcast (CMCSA) subsidiary—experienced site issues as fans rushed to get their tickets. AMC's presales were 10 times more than the previous record, and Fandango said sales were eight times higher than the first-day pre-sale record set by the Hunger Games in 2012. IMAX (IMAX) also had a super record-breaking day with $6.5 million in ticket sales for 390 screens across the US.
The Force Awakens isn't just settling for pre-sale box office dominance. Back in June, Morgan Stanley predicted The Force Awakens making $1.95 billion at the global box office, making it the third-highest grossing film of all time behind James Cameron's Titanic and Avatar. Then in September, Macquarie Securities analyst Tim Nollen wrote that Walt Disney could see $5 billion in first-year sales for Star Wars merchandise.
And there's also the Star Wars marathon that will take place in the lead-up to the release of The Force Awakens. The event will take place at Regal Entertainment (REG) in addition to Alamo Drafthouse and AMC theaters.
The Force Awakens is shaping up to be quite a lucrative movie for Disney. Will the film's popularity boost these other companies' sales as well?
Click on the interactive chart to view data over time.
1. AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (AMC, Earnings, Analysts, Financials): Operates as a theatrical exhibition company in the United States and internationally. Market cap at $2.50B, most recent closing price at $26.44.
2. Comcast Corporation (CMCSA, Earnings, Analysts, Financials): Provides entertainment, information, and communications products and services in the United States and internationally. Market cap at $154.33B, most recent closing price at $61.55.
4. Electronic Arts Inc. (EA, Earnings, Analysts, Financials): Develops, markets, publishes, and distributes game software and content for video game consoles, personal computers, mobile phones, tablets and electronic readers, hand held game players, and the Internet. Market cap at $22.76B, most recent closing price at $72.30.
(Quarterly sales data sourced from Zacks Investment Research. All other data sourced from FINVIZ.)
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- AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (AMC, Chart, Download SEC Filings)
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- The Walt Disney Company (DIS, Chart, Download SEC Filings)
- Electronic Arts Inc. (EA, Chart, Download SEC Filings)
- Hasbro Inc. (HAS, Chart, Download SEC Filings)
- IMAX Corporation (IMAX, Chart, Download SEC Filings)
- Regal Entertainment Group (RGC, Chart, Download SEC Filings)
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