Box Office Predictions — Experts Say ‘The Last Jedi’ Will Not Top ‘The Force Awakens’

Star Wars: The Last Jedi is just over seven weeks away, and some box office projections are suggesting the Episode VIII flick won’t beat its predecessor in the rankings. The Force Awakens is predicted to remain the reigning highest grossing opening weekend champ.

In December 2015, The Force Awakens smashed the box office record of highest weekend opening when it debuted at $247 million domestically. Jurassic World claimed the title itself in June of that year, but lost it six months later to the Star Wars flick.

The Force Awakens also holds the record for highest grossing movie ever domestically, even beating out Avatar in the U.S. It couldn’t beat the James Cameron flick worldwide however, earning $720 million less that Avatar‘s $2.788 billion.

Predictions have begun to roll in on where The Last Jedi will fall in the ranks when it debuts this December. Box Office Pro predicts the eighth Star Wars installment will bring in $215 million on its opening weekend, and $742 million for its overall domestic total. The Force Awakens earned over $936 million domestically.

Collider attributes the potential loss to the timing of the releases. They note that The Force Awakens was the first live action Star Wars flick since 2005, and the hype was bigger than ever. Now that two Star Wars films (including the standalone, Rogue One) have come in the past two years, it dampens the excitement for some moviegoers.

However, Star Wars history might just debunk these predictions. Both The Empire Strikes Back and Attack of the Clones beat out the first movie in their respective trilogies (Star Wars and The Phantom Menace) as far as opening weekend numbers. Today’s media landscape is vastly different than that of the ’80s and ’00s, so Box Office Pro‘s prediction might hold water.

It’s almost guaranteed The Last Jedi will have the biggest opening of 2017, as well as the title of highest domestic gross for the year overall. Currently Beauty and the Beast is holding the title at $174 million opening, and $504 million overall domestic.

The film will also likely land in the top 10 highest grossing movies of all time, worldwide. The Force Awakens currently sits at number three on that chart.

Box Office Pro is also forecasting November’s Thor: Ragnarok and Justice League will each earn $105 million and $150 million on their opening weekends, respectively.

Do you think The Last Jedi has a chance to break The Force Awakens records? Let us know in the comment section below.

[Featured Image by Lucasfilm/Disney Studios]