Inside Pulse Box Office Report: Avatar Passes $1 Billion at World Box Office

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It only took three weeks for James Cameron’s Avatar to obliterate records by grossing $1.02 billion at the worldwide box office. That means it’s already the fourth-biggest movie of all time, knocking The Dark Knight to the fifth spot. “Holy Box Office Bonanza, Batman, you’ve been beaten by 10-foot-tall blue aliens!” “Not quite, Robin. We still have the record in North America.” (Warner Bros. rep whispers to Batman, “actually, Avatar is about to overtake your film in the U.S.”) “Son of a …”

It was a very good New Year for James Cameron’s 3-D sci-fi epic, as it eclipsed $202 million during the weekend, a 20th Century Fox rep said.

Now the only movies ahead of it are Cameron’s Titanic ($1.8 billion), The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King ($1.12 billion), and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest ($1.07 billion).

In North America, moviegoers added $68.3 million to its weekend total, setting a new record for a film in its third weekend. (The old mark was $45 million by Spider-Man in 2002.)

After 17 days in cinemas across the United States and Canada, Avatar has earned $352.1 million, placing it at No. 15 among all movies in terms of ticket sales.

“This is like a freight train out of control,” said Fox distribution executive Bert Livingston. “It just keeps on going.”

The international total for Avatar stands at $670.2 million. The film is playing virtually everywhere. It opened in China on Saturday, and will reach Italy — its final market — on Jan. 15.

Sherlock Holmes was No. 2 with $38.4 million, taking the 10-day total for the Robert Downey Jr. action-adventure to $140.7 million.

Sandra Bullock’s smash The Blind Side keeps chugging along at No. 5 with $12.7 million. The football-themed drama has earned $209.1 million after seven weekends.

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1 Avatar – $68,300,000 (total $352,111,000)
2 Sherlock Holmes – $38,385,000 (total $140,675,000)
3 Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel – $36,600,000 (total $157,345,000)
4 It’s Complicated – $18,700,000 (total $59,105,000)
5 The Blind Side – $12,650,000 (total $209,052,000)
6 Up in the Air – $11,350,000 (total $45,020,000)
7 The Princess and the Frog – $10,013,000 (total $86,085,000)
8 Did You Hear About the Morgans? – $5,200,000 (total $25,620,000)
9 Nine – $4,250,000 (total $14,047,000)
10 Invictus – $4,130,000 (total $30,755,000)

Source: Reuters / Box Office Mojo

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