Twenty two years after the original Jurassic Park movie hit theatres, dinosaurs are ruling the global box offices again.
Jurassic World has trampled its way in cinemas to become a blockbuster monster, blowing away all industry estimates by raking in a record $524.1 million during the first four days of screenings. It is the first movie in the world to generate half a billion dollars within the opening weekend.
Data indicates $208.8 million came from the domestic box office in North America, which beats 2012’s The Avengers’ $207.4 million tally. A total of 4,273 theatres in North America screened the movie, making it the widest release in Universal Pictures’ history.
On Thursday, final pre-opening projections pegged the film’s domestic opening weekend at $177 million.
In overseas markets, the fourth film in the dinosaur science fiction adventure series attained $315.3 million, exceeding the $314 million record held by 2011’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. The movie opened in 66 international territories, including the Chinese market which was responsible for $100.8 million of the global haul.
Jurassic World’s success lends to the studio’s decision to continue the storyline directly from the original 1993 film and market the production with the nostalgia factor. Apart from offering viewers with a look at what John Hammond’s vision would look like, the film also had no other major competitors – other studios decided to steer clear of the Indominus Rex.
In the film, a functioning dinosaur theme park now exists on the fictional island of Isla Nublar, just off the coast of Costa Rica, where the events of the original film transpired 22 years ago.
The new park has been an operational success for quite some time and sees more than 20,000 visitors a day. However, things start to go terribly awry when a smart, genetically-modified dinosaur breaks loose.
The movie was directed by Indie filmmaker Colin Trevorrow and executive produced by Steven Spielberg, who directed the first two films. The film has been a project in the making for over a decade, but it was stalled following storyline issues and the death of author Michael Crichton.
The original Jurassic Park was one of the highest grossing films of all time. It earned a record $914 million in ticket sales, eclipsing 1982’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and making it the highest grossing movie at the time. The record was broken four years later with James Cameron’s Titanic.
Jurassic World‘s sensational box office performance ensures that additional films in the series will be made. Chris Pratt, who stars in Jurassic World, Guardians of the Galaxy, and The Lego Movie, has reportedly signed on for sequels. There is speculation that he could also take on the lead role of future instalments of Indiana Jones.