James Bond can don the tuxedo and break out the Dom Perignon after the super spy returned to theaters in record fashion at the weekend, blowing away box office rivals with $87.8 million in ticket sales for the U.S. and Canadian debut of new movie Skyfall for the biggest opening in the franchise's history.
The best North American opening for the 50-year-old Bond franchise adds to a strong tally of $428.6 million for Skyfall overseas. Globally, the movie starring Daniel Craig as 007 has now earned $518.6 million since first hitting international theaters on Oct. 26, distributor Sony Pictures said. Tops US box office
Skyfall handily beat Walt Disney Co animated movie Wreck-It Ralph, the story of a video game character who destroys everything in his path. The family film that topped last week's charts grabbed $33.1 million from Friday through Sunday and slipped to second place.
Denzel Washington drama Flight, about an airline captain who saves a plane from crashing, pulled in $15.1 million to finish third.
Bond's allure proved unbeatable in Skyfall, the third movie starring Craig and the first in four years. The last Bond film, Quantum of Solace in 2008, opened with a then-record $68 million at North American (U.S. and Canadian) theaters.
"We've always been very bullish about the film, but I don't think anyone expected the kind of stunning numbers that we've seen," said Rory Bruer, president of worldwide distribution for Sony Corp's Sony Pictures studio.
"How many pictures in just over two weeks have earned more than half a billion already?" he told Reuters.
"We've seen huge openings in every country that it's opened in. It's going to be one for the history books," Bruer added.
In the new movie, Judi Dench returns as Bond's supervisor, M. Bond travels between Istanbul, Shanghai and London as his loyalty to M is tested, while MI6 comes under attack from an unknown threat. Javier Bardem plays the villain Bond must stop.
Bond's return has been hailed by the critics as a triumph for the 23-film franchise after a tepid response to Quantum of Solace. Ninety-two percent of Skyfall reviews on the Rotten Tomatoes website were positive, and audiences polled by CinemaScore awarded the film an A grade. The film has already exceeded the Quantum lifetime box office total.
The $200 million movie was produced by MGM, Sony and Eon Productions. Its release comes 50 years after the franchise premiered with Dr. No in 1962, and the producers highlighted the anniversary in the film's marketing. The 22 previous Bond films have grossed $5 billion at box offices over five decades.
Skyfall was the only major new nationwide release this weekend. Steven Spielberg's historical drama Lincoln opened in 11 theaters with sales of $900,000, or $81,818 per theater on average. The movie which stars Daniel Day-Lewis as the 16th president expands to 1,500 locations next Friday.
Rounding out the top five, Ben Affleck drama Argo, about the rescue of U.S. diplomats from Iran in 1979, finished in fourth place with $6.7 million. In fifth place, Liam Neeson hostage thriller Taken 2 grabbed $4.0 million.
Sony Corp's movie studio released Skyfall. Flight was distributed by Paramount Pictures, a unit of Viacom Inc. Lincoln was produced by Dreamworks and released by Disney. Time Warner Inc's Warner Bros. studio released Argo. Taken 2 was distributed by 20th Century Fox, a unit of News Corp.
SKYFALL OPENS WELL
James Bond's Skyfall gets 2nd biggest Hollywood opening in India
The hugely anticipated 23rd Bond film Skyfall, starring Daniel Craig and Oscar-winner Javier Bardem, has posted a gross of Rs. 27.5 crore approximately in its four-day opening weekend in India.
This makes it the second biggest opening weekend ever for a Hollywood film in India and the highest for a non-3D film. The film has grossed Rs. 34.5 crore as of today.
Sony Pictures India released the film on November 1 with 907 prints (the largest 2D Hollywood release ever) in four languages – English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu - and in 2D and IMAX formats. BOND IN INDIA
Skyfall crew at the UK premiere
Skyfall sets several new records in UK
James Bond is always bound to make a splash on his home turf, the UK. Skyfall proves it once again, after recording the best first week start in British history. The movie led by Daniel Craig netted £37.2M (€46.4M) by the end of its first week of screening, according to The Hollywood Repoter. SCORER SKYFALL
BLOCKBUSTER 007: Skyfall's opening bigger than any James Bond yet
Skyfall has taken more in its opening weekend at the British box office than any previous James Bond film, say producers.
Starring Daniel Craig as 007 for a third time, Skyfall has made £20.1 million ($32.2 million, 25.0 million euros) in Britain and Ireland since opening in both countries on Friday, according to a statement on its website. BLOCKBUSTER BOND24th, 25th James Bond films already in the making
With Daniel Craig starrer Skyfall set to hit the theatres soon, the makers have already started work on the 24th and 25th James Bond films. Writer John Logan is onboard to write the screenplays for both the films, which may get shot back to back, the Variety reported. MGM had no comment about Logan's attachment but the writer is said to be a part of the project. FULL STORYI’ll be too old to play James Bond at 44 and three quarters: Daniel Craig
Daniel Craig, who has been getting rave reviews for his portrayal of James Bond in new movie Skyfall, jokingly said that he will be too old for the role when he turns 44 and three quarters.Craig has signed a deal to appear in two more 007 films, and may even do more. “I will keep going as long as I can. I am contracted for two more and that seems like a fair few,” the Sun quoted him as saying.“But I am not going to outstay my welcome. Someone else will have to have the chance to have a crack at this,” he added. READ ON
James Bond: Critics declare Skyfall as one of the spy's finest
Daniel Craig thrilled James Bond fans in London on Tuesday when he stepped onto the red carpet with co-stars Judi Dench and Javier Bardem for the world premiere of the 23rd Bond film Skyfall.
Craig, making his third outing as Bond, said it had been a "real honour" to play the role in the franchise's 50th anniversary year, as he swept past a giant 007 logo and the secret agent's favourite Aston Martin. CRITICS VERDICTDaniel Craig wouldn’t go nude for Skyfall sex scene, reveals Berenice Marlohe
Bond girl Berenice Marlohe has revealed that her co-star Daniel Craig insisted on keeping his pants on when they filmed their shower scene for the movie Skyfall. The 33-year-old beauty asserted that it was only after she begged him to take them off that Daniel obliged. BOND AND BABEI never dreamt I’d be in Bond movie: Javier Bardem
Javier Bardem has revealed that he had watched Sean Connery play 007 as a kid – but he never thought he’d be in Bond movie too. The rugged Spanish actor plays vengeful villain Raoul Silva in the 23rd official Bond movie, Skyfall, which is out on Friday. “I’m a huge fan of the James Bond saga, so I was always very open to the idea. When I was little I watched Mr Connery doing James Bond with my father,” the Sun quoted Javier as saying. BOND VILLAIN
Skyfall tipped to be 'most successful' James Bond film
The latest 007 instalment Skyfall is set to be the most successful James Bond movie in the 50-year history of the franchise and is predicted to rake in more than 1 billion dollars at the box office.
It has been met with universal praise following its preview and is expected to storm to the top of the box office. BIGGEST BOND?
Bond girl Berenice Marlohe bares all for steamy sex scene in Skyfall
Berenice Marlohe, who plays seductress Severine in the latest 007 film Skyfall, strips totally nude for a steamy sex scene with a hunky co-star, it has been revealed. The 33-year-old French actress bares her boobs in the X-rated romp, the Sun reported.
Wearing a short bright red wig and heavy mascara, Marlohe is shown kissing her co-star before they have sex in front of a mirror. BOND BABE
This publicity photo shows Sean Connery, left, as James Bond in a scene from the 1963 film, From Russia With Love.
SPY 'N' SEDUCTRESS: Bond turns 50
This publicity photo shows Sean Connery, left, as James Bond in a scene from the 1963 film, From Russia With Love. Take a look at more such iconic 'Bond' moments as the legendary spy turns 50. JAMES BOND TURNS 50 IN STYLE
Roger Moore kissed more girls than any James Bond
As the famous film franchise James Bond turns 50, it has been revealed that Roger Moore holds the record for the highest number of kisses with 20 onscreen clinches.
The 84-year-old actor is closely followed by Sean Connery with 18 and Pierce Brosnan with 12, the Daily Mail reported. KISSABLE BOND
Javier Bardem one of the best Bond villains ever
Spanish actor Javier Bardem is seen in an all-new blonde avatar as he plays villian Raoul Silva in the film.
Javier Bardem is being hailed by the British media for his performance in Skyfall, the latest installment in the James Bond series, with critics saying the character played by the Spanish actor may be one of the best villains to ever take on 007. Bardem plays Raoul Silva, a dandyish cyberterrorist, in the film directed by Sam Mendes, taking on Daniel Craig's Bond. READ ON
SPIES 'N' SENSUALITY: Hot Bond babes
The Hottest Bond Babes
Whether ally or enemy, Bond girls undoubtedly ooze glamour and sophistication, so in honour of the James Bond franchise's 50th anniversary here is a reminder of some of the film's biggest beauty icons - from Ursula Andress and Halle Berry to Gemma Arterton and Berenice Marlohe. CHECK THEM OUT HERE
WATCH: Adele's James Bond theme song
In 2012, Adele was listed at number five on VH1's 100 Greatest Women In Music, and American magazine Time named Adele one of the most influential people in the world.
Adele's Skyfall theme song is finally out there for all. The track is called Skyfall itself and fits perfectly to the theme of the film. Skyfall has a brassy and soulful tune alongside the work of Shirley Bassey in the oeuvre of James Bond title tracks, reports Huffington Post.
This is Adele's first song after her hit album 21. The lyrics goes like this: WATCH SONG
(With additional inputs)