Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opened with the fifth-highest first night of all time, earning $40 million from Thursday night previews and topping the $39 million generated by Avengers: Infinity War in 2018. The film is on pace to have one of the biggest opening weekends of all time, with Disney's relatively conservative projections expecting it to make somewhere between $160 million and $170 million, while other projections have it earning as much as $200 million. Only seven movies — including the last two Skywalker Saga films — have ever opened bigger than $200 million. Of those, six of them are Disney-owned films in either the Marvel or Star Wars brands.
Avengers: Endgame earned $357 million in its first few days, followed by Infinity War ($257 million), Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($247 million), Star Wars: The Last Jedi ($220 million), Jurassic World ($209 million), Marvel’s The Avengers ($207 million and the first film ever to pass the $200 million mark), and Black Panther ($202 million). Of the other recent Star Wars-branded films, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story earned $155 million in its opening frame, while Solo: A Star Wars Story pulled in just $84 million.
With the drop between The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, it will be interesting to see whether The Rise of Skywalker trends up or down from the others. Non-stop internet discourse about The Last Jedi and the box office disappointment of Solo may have set Disney up to manage their expectations, but earlier this year, the Marvel Cinematic Universe ended its first 11-year story cycle with Endgame, which became the highest-grossing movie of all time. Considering the cultural footprint left by Star Wars, it would be difficult to imagine nobody is hoping for a similarly huge showing from The Rise of Skywalker.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker stars Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong'o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, Billie Lourd, Naomi Ackie, Richard E. Grant, Keri Russell, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Billy Dee Williams, and Carrie Fisher.
Are you excited about the end of the decades-long Skywalker Saga? Let us know how you feel about it in the comments. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opens in theaters on December 20th.
Star Wars is also headed to the Disney+ streaming service. The Mandalorian is now streaming on DIsney+. A show following Obi-Wan Kenobi is in the works, with Ewan MacGregor returning to the role. A series about Rogue One’s Cassian Andor is also in development.