After months of secrecy and anticipation, Star Wars: The Force Awakens is thrilling fans and theater owners alike. The most anticipated film in the galaxy opened globally Thursday, setting international and presale box-office records and delighting moviegoers who've had opening-night tickets in hand for months. All over the world, Star Wars enthusiasts toted lightsabers and wore character costumes to packed opening-night showings of The Force Awakens, which has received overwhelmingly positive reviews from critics and fans internationally.
While domestic box-office returns won't be available until later Friday, the Walt Disney Co. said Thursday the film debuted with $14.1 million from its first screenings in 12 international markets. The largest was France, where the film earned $5.2 million. It set a one-day record in Norway and Sweden. More than $100 million in tickets have been presold in North America, where the movie ticket service Fandango said it has already sold more tickets for The Force Awakens than any movie over its entire theatrical run. (A weather forecaster in the UK managed to squeeze 12 Star Wars puns into a 40-second report.)