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Weekend Box Office: Potter Casts Biggest Spell Yet, Next Three Days Can't Last One Weekend

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By Chris Kavan - 11/22/10 at 09:49 AM CT

Despite being the 7th film in the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt. 1 proved that the wizard series still has plenty of magic left. It easily premiered in the #1 spot, earning a series-record $125.1 million besting the $102.7 million that Goblet of Fire opened with in 2005.

While Deathly Hallows, Pt. 1 was only 6th on the all-time opening charts, it did manage to break one other record: the $12.4 million IMAX opening broke the record held by Alice in Wonderland. In all likely hood, the Potter franchise should soon be the top-grossing franchise of all time in a few weeks time, surpassing Star Wars (though still behind in the attendance category). Expect it to hit that mark of $1.92 billion by the end of the month (or very close to it).

The week's only other big release, The Next Three Days, fizzled in comparison. The Russell Crowe crime drama managed only a 5th-place $6.8 million opening. It was less than half of Crowe's previous film, State of Play took in.

Megamind held up well despite losing a hefty chunk of its audience to a teen wizard. It took in another $16.2 million - off 45% but closing in on $110 million total. That total is still well behind similar animated movies as Despicable Me and How to Train Your Dragon both tracked better during the same time period.

Unstoppable dropped 42% with a 3rd place $13.1 million take. In 4th was the comedy Due Date with $9.2 million. The road trip comedy should break the $75 million mark sometime this week.

Suffering the biggest drop this week was the poorly-reviewed alien invasion film Skyline, which shaved off 71% of its audience to land in 7th with $3.43 million. Yet since the film had a modest budget, sequel talks are already underway, critics be damned.

The biggest threat to Harry Potter next weekend appears to be Tangled while more adult fare includes the musical Burlesque, the critically-acclaimed The King's Speech, action-packed Faster and the Anne Hatheway/Jake Gyllenhaal romantic comedy Love and Other Drugs. With at least three days up on the competition, Deathly Hallows should be able to rule the holiday week.

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