Bond is not only back but he is threatening to claim an Aston Martin full of records as the 23rd James Bond instalment Skyfall continues to dominate box offices worldwide prior to its release in North America on Friday.
Skyfall - Trailer
Promo: 800 Words season 2
Trailer: Australian Survivor sneak peek
Bachelor Mansion Tour
Trailer: Blade Runner (1982)
Trailer: A Star Is Born (1954)
Skyfall - Trailer
MI6 is under attack and Bond's loyalty to M is tested as her past comes back to haunt her.
Only 10 days old in box-office terms, Skyfall has already taken an impressive $287 million from cinemas despite only being released in mostly European and Asian territories. This includes $US157 million ($A152 million) over the past weekend alone, continuing the trend of Skyfall outperforming Quantum of Solace and Casino Royale in most markets for the equivalent period.
The film has already started claiming records around the world, with figures in The Hollywood Reporter showing that Skyfall recorded the largest opening of the year in Germany over the weekend with $US23.9 million, and the highest opening ever in Switzerland where its $US5.3 million takings stole the title from its predecessor, Quantum of Solace. It also recorded strong openings in Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Austria, India, Taiwan and Mexico.
Crucially, the movie has held on to its audiences, with strong second-weekend figures across the board. These include a notably small 21 per cent drop weekend-on-weekend in Britain, where it grossed $US25.7 million after the most successful opening for a Bond film ever last weekend. Skyfall has taken $US85.8 million in the UK to date.
In North America, where the film's delayed release has seen it avoid the US election as well as Hurricane Sandy, the Los Angeles Times reports pre-release surveys predicting an opening of more than $US80 million.
That would see Skyfall claim the record North American opening for a Bond film, taking the title from Quantum of Solace, which had an opening of $US67.5 in 2008. It would also place it on track to become the highest-grossing Bond film ever, a title held by Casino Royale which took in $US594.2 million worldwide, just ahead of Quantum of Solace on $US586.1 million.
In Australia, Quantum of Solace took $20.6 million in 2008, while Casino Royale claimed $25.4 million in 2006. The highest earner at the Australian box office this year is The Avengers on $54.4 million.
If Skyfall is to lay claim to being the most successful Bond film of all time it will have a few more hurdles to overcome, with box-office analysis site BoxOfficeMojo ranking 1965's Thunderball the top Bond film when figures are adjusted for inflation. Thunderball's North American box office of $US63.6 million is worth $US599.9 million in today's terms, to rank it the 28th-highest-earning film of all time (Goldfinger is the next Bond film in the chart, at 42). Thunderball's worldwide income of $141.2 million would adjust to approximately $US1.3 billion using the same calculation.