Star Wars sets new Xmas Day record
THE latest Star Wars film has smashed yet another box office record, raking in US$49.3 million (S$69 million) on Christmas Day in North America - the highest total ever on the holiday, industry figures showed on Saturday.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens easily bested the previous Christmas Day record take of US$24.6 million set by Sherlock Holmes starring Robert Downey Jr, which opened on Dec 25, 2009.
"Star Wars continues to be a bright, shining beacon of light at the box office," said Jeff Bock of industry tracker Exhibitor Relations.
So far, The Force Awakens - the highly anticipated seventh instalment in the blockbuster space saga - has taken in a whopping US$890.3 million worldwide, with US$440.4 million in the United States alone, Mr Bock said.
The film has received mostly glowing reviews and is being credited with breathing new life into the Hollywood juggernaut franchise launched by creator George Lucas in 1977.
It had already set a number of other box office records - highest-grossing domestic opening night, biggest domestic single-day sales and biggest global opening weekend.
As far as all-time box office sales, two films by James Cameron hold the record - Avatar (US$2.79 billion) and Titanic (US$2.19 billion) - and it is expected that The Force Awakens might unseat both.