‘Barbie’ beats ‘Oppenheimer’ at the box office with a record $155 million debut

‘Barbie’, directed by Greta Gerwig, and ‘Oppenheimer’, directed by Christopher Nolan, collectively raked in a record $235.5 million in their opening weekend, the highest three-day opening post-pandemic and the fourth-highest in history.

Unprecedented success: ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer’ together marked the highest-selling box office opening in history not led by an established franchise.
* Barbie, a comedy starring Margot Robbie, fetched $155 million in the first three days of domestic ticket sales.
* Oppenheimer, a biographical drama starring Cillian Murphy, doubled its projected ticket sales for opening weekend netting $80.5 million.
* Together, they marked the biggest three-day opening ever seen post-pandemic, and the fourth-biggest ever, behind Avengers: Endgame, Avengers: Infinity War and Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Breaking records: Both films individually set new records.
* ‘Barbie’ set new records for highest preview ticket sales of the year ($22.2 million), biggest single-day debut of the year ($70.5 million), biggest North American opening for a movie directed by a woman, and biggest debut for a comedic film.
* ‘Oppenheimer’ set records for second-highest opening for a non-franchise, R-rated film, third-largest opening for a biographical film in North America, and the seventh-biggest opening for films longer than 165 minutes.

Meeting the Hype: Both films enjoyed positive audience reception with high scores on Rotten Tomatoes and high grades in exit polls.
* ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer’ scored 90% and 94% respectively on Rotten Tomatoes.
* Both films received an A grade in CinemaScore exit polls.
* Over 200,000 people watched the films as a double feature, according to the National Association of Theater Owners.

Future implications: The success of these films may have a significant impact on the movie industry’s future.
* The films’ success could be a turning point for Hollywood, suggesting a new focus on fresh characters and original storylines over tired sequels.
* Mattel, the company behind Barbie (the doll), has expressed intentions to transition from being a toy manufacturing company to an intellectual property (IP) company managing franchises.

View original article on NPR

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