'Phantom Menace' Opening Day: $28,542,349
by Brandon Gray
May 20, 1999
The records for opening day and single day grosses have been shattered. Phantom Menace racked up its $28.5 million from 2,970 theaters, averaging $9,610 per theater. This beats Lost World's opening day record by $6.9 million and its single day record by $2.4 million.
What makes this achievement even more impressive is that it did it on a weekday, when school is still in session, and at 311 fewer theaters than Lost World. To put this astronomical opening further into perspective, this single day gross nearly matches Titanic's $28.6 million opening weekend.
Still, some may perceive this opening as a slight disappointment. After all, the media has been quoting the "box office experts" as saying the picture was on track to rake in $35 to 45 million its first day. But understand that these estimates were from media whores trying to cash in on the hype. Consider their views as you would those of such "movie critics" as Jeff Craig or Ron Brewington, whose quotes you see plastered on the ad campaigns for even the crappiest of movies. (That is, of course, unless you ever see me quoted.)
Editor's Note: Articles published before 2001 were assigned and reported as box office briefings, not a full evaluation or analysis.