Mirrored from variety.com
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is heading for a massive launch in the $200 million range during its Dec. 15-17 opening weekend in North America, according to first estimates released by tracking services on Wednesday.
Directed by Rian Johnson, the movie picks up where 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” left off. It stars returning cast members Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Andy Serkis.
New cast members include Kelly Marie Tran, Laura Dern, and Benicio del Toro. It’s the final film role for Fisher, who died last December.
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” set an all-time record in December of 2015, with a domestic opening of $248 million at 4,134 theaters for the first “Star Wars” movie in a decade. The first “Star Wars” spinoff, “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” opened a year later with $155.1 million.
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” will most likely be the biggest debut of the year, surpassing the March 17-19 opening for “Beauty and the Beast” at $174.8 million.
Disney had no comment on the tracking, which showed that the key “unaided awareness” and “definite interest” categories in the same range as “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”
Should the $200 million forecast hold, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” could be the fourth film to debut at that level. The others are “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” 2015’s “Jurassic World” at $208.8 million and 2012’s “The Avengers” at $207.4 million.