Skyfall 007 box office: Biggest domestic opening ever for a James Bond movie?
Skyfall, the latest James Bond movie, opened in North America with a solid (though hardly jaw-dropping) $4.6 million from 463 IMAX screenings on Thursday evening ($2.2 million) and Thursday midnight shows ($2.4m) according to studio estimates found at Box Office Mojo. As per Deadline.com's source, Skyfall will gross over the weekend (including Thursday evening and midnight grosses) somewhere between $75 million (according to distributor Sony Pictures) and $88 million (according to other studios, following an expected $37 million Friday gross). [Photo: Skyfall 007 movie with Daniel Craig as James Bond, next to his Aston Martin.]
Now, to claim that Skyfall's opening-weekend grosses are about to become the 007 movies' highest ever is to compare apples with Apple stores. The James Bond movies may all share the name "James Bond," but no Sean Connery or Roger Moore 007 flick ever opened at 3,505 locations -- not even close.
Daniel Craig James Bond movies: Skyfall vs. Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace
Now, comparing Skyfall to previous Daniel Craig James Bond movies: Made for a reported $150m (not including marketing / distribution expenses), Casino Royale opened in November 2006 with $40.83 million, or approximately $49.5 million adjusted for inflation at 3,434 locations, averaging $11,890 per site, or $14,400 adjusted. In November 2008, Quantum of Solace debuted with a much stronger $67.52 million, or approximately $74.6 million adjusted for inflation at 3,451 venues, averaging $19,568 per site, or $21,600 adjusted. Quantum of Solace cost a reported $200m, the same price tag as Skyfall. (Adjusted for inflation, Quantum of Solace is the more expensive movie.)
So, will Skyfall's opening weekend be bigger than those of Daniel Craig's previous two James Bond movies? The answer is: in all likelihood yes, even if Thursday's IMAX figures aren't tallied as part of the film's total weekend gross. [See also: Skyfall Box Office: To Become Most Successful James Bond Movie Ever?.]
Note: Skyfall has collected $321 million overseas as of last Wednesday, November 7. It's already the top 2012 movie at the United Kingdom's box office, having just surpassed Christopher Nolan / Christian Bale's The Dark Knight Rises. The latest Bond has yet to open in China, Australia, and Japan.
Skyfall 007 movie cast
Besides James Bond no. 6* Daniel Craig, Skyfall features Javier Bardem, Judi Dench, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Bérénice Marlohe, Helen McCrory, Ola Rapace, Rory Kinnear, Nicholas Woodeson, and Albert Finney -- in a role briefly considered for Sean Connery, in honor of the James Bond series' 50th anniversary.
Skyfall was directed by Academy Award winner Sam Mendes, who had previously worked with Daniel Craig in Road to Perdition. The film's screenplay is credited to The Aviator's John Logan, and the Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace duo Neal Purvis and Robert Wade. Adele sings Skyfall's theme song.
James Bond actors
* The James Bond actors are Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan, and now Daniel Craig. David Niven played Bond in the all-star spy spoof Casino Royale, which has nothing in common with the Daniel Craig movie. Additionally, before anybody else, in 1954 Barry Nelson played James Bond in one episode -- "Casino Royale" -- of the TV anthology series Climax!.
Skyfall 007 movie with Daniel Craig as James Bond (and Aston Martin) photo: François Duhamel / Sony Pictures.