Box office: Has 'Eclipse' truly surpassed 'New Moon'?
Down only 0.7 percent when compared to the previous day, The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, directed by David Slade, and starring Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, and Taylor Lautner, collected $190,000 on Thursday, Aug. 19, '10, at the North American box office.
Totaling $296.64 million, Eclipse has finally (Day 51) officially passed its predecessor, Chris Weitz's The Twilight Saga: New Moon, at the domestic box office. New Moon, which opened in fall 2009, cumed at $296.62 million after 133 days.
But does “officially” mean “actually”?
Lies, damned lies and box office figures
Not adjusted for inflation or 3D/IMAX surcharges, Eclipse is at no. 35 on the Box Office Mojo chart of the top box office hits ever in the U.S. and Canada. New Moon is no. 36.
Adjusted for inflation, neither movie is to be found among the top 100. That particular chart begins with Victor Fleming's Gone with the Wind ($1.6 billion) and ends with Lee Unkrich's Toy Story 2 ($380.3 million).
'Eclipse' actually still trailing 'New Moon'
So, adjusted for higher ticket prices – using the National Association of Theater Owners' annual average – New Moon would have grossed $299.58 million in 2010 – nearly $3 million more than Eclipse's total to date. (And yes, I know these “averages” are iffy, but they do give you an idea about the inflation/3D/IMAX effect.)
Eclipse, for instance, was screened at 193 IMAX theaters in North America, which are about 30 percent more expensive than regular movie houses. In its first week out, Eclipse pulled in $9 million at those IMAX venues (the equivalent of approx. $6.9 million at a regular movie house). New Moon didn't have that revenue-inflating luxury.
For Eclipse to pass New Moon in number of tickets sold, it'll have to gross – and this is a guesstimate based on the information above – at least another $5–6 million domestically, or reach a cume of $302–$303 million. Chances are it'll get there and a little beyond before running its full course.
On Day 51, New Moon's total was $290 million. It added another $6 million in the following 82 days. Eclipse has lost steam this past week, but prior to that it was way ahead of New Moon in terms of box office stamina.
Besides Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, and Taylor Lautner, Eclipse features the following actors:
Sarah Clarke. Charlie Bewley. Kiowa Gordon. Justin Chon. Julia Jones. Alex Meraz. Jack Huston. Chaske Spencer. Gil Birmingham.
Best Actress Oscar nominee Catalina Sandino Moreno (Maria Full of Grace, 2004).
Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart Eclipse image: Kimberley French / Summit Entertainment.