IT'S OFFICIAL: 'The Dark Knight Rises' Nabs The Highest-Grossing 2D Opening Weekend Ever

the dark knight batman

Photo: Warner Brothers / The Dark Knight

Worldwide box office numbers are finally out, and as expected, “The Dark Knight Rises” reigned at theatres, gaining notoriety for making box-office history by earning $160.8 million opening weekend; however, the Caped Crusader fell short of his $195 million estimated mark.Warner Bros. made the decision Friday to hold its box-office earnings until Monday. Hours later, the rest of the studios followed suit. So, what many expected to be one of the biggest box-office weekends to date for inarguably the summer’s most anticipated film, closed with a solemn end. 

And, while slightly higher, early estimates for the film buzzed over the weekend, we decided to wait until the official numbers came out as the studios intended. 

Though, not as strong as intended–Deadline reported the film earning as high as $195 million opening weekend–”The Dark Knight Rises” came out on top earning $160.8 million. This number gives TDKR the title of the biggest 2D opening in box-office history and the third-highest opening weekend to date behind “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2” and “The Avengers.”

We consider this number slightly low provided predecessor “The Dark Knight” earned $158.4m its opening weekend four years ago when the price of tickets was far lower. 

This opening suggests people stayed home not because word of mouth spread the film wasn’t great, but, rather, because of the sobering effects of Friday morning’s shooting.  

the dark knight rises billboard

Photo: Kirsten Acuna, Business Insider

We went to a midnight showing ourselves, before seeing the film a second time in IMAX Sunday morning, and we must say it was difficult for the film to not be shrouded by the events of Friday morning. We felt the urge to watch the path of any one person getting up to leave his or her seat–something one should never have to do at theatres. Call it paranoia, surely, we knew there was nothing to worry over; however, it was difficult to not have the thought in our minds this weekend, especially with three other arrests in separate TDKR incidents.

Though Friday morning’s events in Colorado may have deterred some of the potential audience, it’s unknown what this will do for Warner Bros. summer blockbuster down the road. The studio has already pulled TV ads, and began painting over a billboard ad that hung outside our window (normally these billboards sit on display for about a month. This one has been up since the beginning of the month). If fans have pitted this as the must-see film of the summer, we expect it to drop less in percentage the second week than “The Dark Knight.” 

TDK dropped 29.1-per cent in ticket sales it’s second day in theatres. In comparison, “Rises” dipped significantly farther with 40.7-per cent in ticket sales day two. Provided, TDKR also earned more opening day and night than TDK ($75.7m as opposed to $67m), so a significant drop in day two was expected. However, the day to day earnings should have seen the film carrying more steadily above its predecessor. 

Worldwide, TDKR did better than TDK in three days. “Rises” earned $88m overseas, putting the overall gross for the film at an estimated $248.8m.

Here’s a breakdown of “The Dark Knight Rises” vs “The Dark Knight” gross for each film’s respective opening weekend: 

    “The Dark Knight Rises” (2012)                 “The Dark Knight” (2008)

Friday:                                $75.7m                                              $67.1m
Saturday:                            $44.9m                                              $47.6m
Sunday:                              $40.2m                                              $43.5m
Domestic earnings:             $160.8m                                            $158.4m
Worldwide earnings:           $248.8m                                            $199.7m ($41.3m foreign)
Domestic theatre count:        4,404 (330 IMAX)                               4,366 

SEE ALSO: How much it would cost the average Joe to become the Caped Crusader >

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.