July 20, 2012

SHOWBUZZDAILY BOXOFFICE: The Dark Knight Rises Amidst Tragedy


It may be unseemly even to discuss the dollars and cents of movie boxoffice as we all recoil and try to get a grasp on the terrible events that took place in Colorado last night.  Such dreadful aspects of real life should have no place in what was supposed to be a weekend of celebrating the best kind of movie fantasy.  But a key line that runs through Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy comes to mind:  “Why do we fall?  So we might learn to pick ourselves up.”  Moving on, and being able to appreciate good movies and the success they have, is part of that.

So:  last night THE DARK KNIGHT RISES had the 2d highest midnight opening of any  movie in history, earning $30.6M.  That was behind only Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, with $43.5M–but that picture had the advantage of 3D ticket prices.  Notably, it was significantly ahead of the midnight start for The Avengers (also in 3D), which kicked off its run with $18.7M, giving Dark Knight a bit of a head start as it tries to scale the wall of Avengers’ record-breaking opening $207M weekend.  To all the imponderables that go into boxoffice predictions, of course, now is added the possible after-effects of the tragedy in Colorado–although there is no sign whatsoever that what happened was anything but a singularly horrible incident, will people shy away from movie theatres this weekend?  We don’t know.  While understandable on some instinctual level, it would be sad if they did– and it’s something we’ll discover as these days go on.   

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."