LOS ANGELES: The new Harry Potter movie enjoyed the biggest box office debut of the entire boy wizard series and the fifth largest ever, making 61 million dollars on its first day, estimates said Saturday.
“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One” made 24 million dollars in midnight Thursday screenings, followed by 37 million for the rest of the day Friday, according to Box Office Mojo.
If confirmed, the Potter movie will have had the fifth best opening day ever, behind the last two “Twilight” movies, “The Dark Knight,” and “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen,” Entertainment Weekly reported online.
The Friday figure would also be the biggest opening the Potter franchise, beating “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” which made 58.2 million in its debut last year.
Entertainment Weekly forecast that “Deathly Hallows” could make up to 156 million dollars on its first weekend, although a more conservative estimate would put it at 130-140 million dollars.
“Which as Ron Weasley would say, is 'bloody brilliant,' its box office analyst commented.
In the new movie evil Lord Voldemort and his evil henchmen control huge swathes of the wizarding world and Harry is constantly in danger.
Harry, Hermione and Ron leave behind the safety of school and their families and set out alone to seek out horcruxes, items in which Voldemort has hidden pieces of his soul, so they can destroy them and ultimately bring him down.
Much of the film revolves around a road trip, as the trio travel around Britain to try to stay safe, and focuses on the close friendship between the main characters, in particular the budding romance between Hermione and Ron.
It ends on a cliffhanger, however, as the final resolution will not be known until Part Two, which is due out in July. That will cover a final, explosive battle between Potter and his allies and Voldemort's dark forces.
Box offices estimates by the more widely used box office tracker, Exhibitor Relations, are due out on Sunday, while full weekend figures are published on Monday. AGENCIES