Box office analysts became Swifties as they anticipated the release of Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour concert film, projecting a colossal opening weekend performance. Taylor Swift didn’t disappoint.
While the popular singer fell just shy of reaching the $100 million milestone, her domestic ticket sales still managed to soar beyond $95 million, as confirmed by AMC Entertainment, the distributor.
AMC Entertainment initially provided a ballpark figure ranging from $95 million to $97 million for the film’s opening weekend, with the expectation that an official tally would be available on Monday, once all ticket sales were accounted for.
“The film’s debut is an undeniable tentpole-level success despite the challenges of predicting what it might achieve,” declared Shawn Robbins, chief analyst at BoxOffice.com. “Swift, her fans, and theatrical exhibition should all be celebrating the results.”
Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour Film
The film has already achieved remarkable milestones, shattering records as it claimed the title of the highest-grossing concert film release in the domestic market. This accomplishment surpasses the previous record set by Justin Bieber “Never Say Never,” which earned $73 million during its entire theatrical run in 2011, all within a single weekend.
Furthermore, it effortlessly outperformed Miley Cyrus’ “Best of Both Worlds,” which held the record for the highest opening with $31.1 million in 2008.
Taylor Swift, Eras Tour film also holds the distinction of being the concert film with the widest release in history, premiering in over 3,850 theaters across the country.
The official count on Monday will reveal whether Swift’s film managed to secure the highest October opening, a title currently held by 2019’s “The Joker” at $96.2 million, and whether it ranks as the sixth or seventh highest opening of 2023. For reference, Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” achieved an opening of $95.6 million when it premiered in May.
There’s also the possibility that positive word-of-mouth and Swift’s dedicated fanbase could drive more moviegoers to theaters on Sunday, inching it closer to the coveted $100 million mark.
“As highlighted in recent weeks, forecasts were always going to be incredibly volatile given the highly unique nature of this release,” Robbins said. “Variables such as average ticket price, the assessment of how Swift’s fan base would impact presales, and whether or not any traditional marketing would bring out non-Swifties all weighed heavily on the wide range of possible outcomes.”
Strong Opening Weekend
Initially, there were projections suggesting that Swift could amass between $40 million and $60 million on Friday, potentially culminating in an opening weekend box office total as high as $150 million. The film ultimately raked in $39 million on Friday, narrowly missing the projected range, and this figure included $2.8 million from last-minute Thursday night previews, which were announced less than 24 hours before their availability for purchase.
Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Comscore, stated, “Swift’s excitement-inducing reputation and the unprecedented nature of the release led to a massive outpouring of interest in the film certainly contributed to some overblown expectations of a $100 million plus weekend,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Comscore. “But that should not detract from the enormity of this box office achievement.”
An impressive 60% of weekend tickets were purchased in advance, a figure report, marking one of the highest pre-sale rates ever observed by the movie data firm. Typically, major blockbuster releases see around 40% of tickets sold in advance.
EntTelligence estimated that approximately 4.8 million individuals attended the film during the weekend, with an average ticket price of $20.75. An overwhelming majority, nearly 80%, of the audience consisted of female viewers.
It Sets Sights on Global Box Office Success
While international box office numbers were not immediately available on Sunday, the film’s strong domestic opening has heightened expectations that it could potentially surpass the $262.5 million global earnings achieved by “Michael Jackson’s This Is It” during its limited theatrical run.
Swift’s film is unique in that it features weekend-only showings in theaters, as opposed to daily screenings, making it challenging to draw immediate comparisons with other releases in the following weeks. However, it will be possible to make relevant weekend-to-weekend comparisons.
Paul Dergarabedian raised the question of what the future holds for Swift’s film in the days and weeks to come. He states that reports of a remarkable in-theater experience are a positive sign for the film’s long-term appeal and are a strong indicator that the film will comfortably exceed the $100 million milestone in the domestic market.
Taylor Swift’s concert film had an impressive opening weekend, earning over $95 million in domestic ticket sales. It set new records, surpassing Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus. Despite only showing on weekends, it’s likely to exceed $100 million with its devoted fan base and positive reception.