March 27, 2017

“Harry Potter” beats Burton’s “Alice,” sets IMAX record


By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Broken records just keep piling up at the feet of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.”

The seventh and penultimate chapter of the cinematic “Harry Potter” opened to $125M last weekend, giving it the highest-grossing opening weekend in franchise history. On the heels of that announcement, IMAX officials announced that “Potter” set a global opening-weekend record of $16.1 million from 340 IMAX theaters. That beat the previous record holder, Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland,” which earned $15.3M when it was released in March.

So does that mean more films will try to come out in IMAX? Will the technology catch on like 3D recently has? Probably not. It’s very expensive filming with proper IMAX cameras. Only directors like Christopher Nolan have the clout to target IMAX releases (as rumors say Nolan’s third Batman film will be released for IMAX screens).

“Harry Potter” faces stiff competition this Thanksgiving weekend from Disney’s “Tangled” and Dwayne Johnson’s “Faster.” We also have Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal in Ed Zwick’s “Love and Other Drugs.” Will one of them knock “Potter” off of his box-office perch? We’ll find out Sunday.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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