With The Dark Knight Rises now approaching its tenth week of release in theaters, the film continues its climb up the all time domestic box office list. This week, The Dark Knight Rises passed by Shrek 2 to reach the #7 position on the all time domestic box office list.
Through Friday of this week, The Dark Knight Rises has accumulated $442,203,000 at the U.S. box office. There are only six films that remain ahead of The Dark Knight Rises on the all time domestic box office list. The six films are Avatar, Titanic, The Avengers, The Dark Knight, Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace, and Star Wars.
Even though being ranked seventh is an impressive accomplishment, a strong case could be made that The Dark Knight Rises actually deserves to rank higher. Of the six films ranked ahead of The Dark Knight Rises, four of them accumulated their box office totals through multiple releases. While Titanic and Avatar made enough during their initial release that they would still rank ahead of The Dark Knight Rises, the same cannot be said for the two Star Wars films in the top six list.
Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace made $431,088,295 during its initial release, and Star Wars made $307,263,857 during its initial release. Based on initial release rather than cumulative totals, The Dark Knight Rises would actually rank in the fifth position on the all time domestic box office list, right behind The Dark Knight which ranks fourth.