‘Breaking Dawn’ Brings in $72 Million on Opening Day

Breaking Dawn
Breaking Dawn Part 2 hit theaters Friday
Screen shot 2011 09 14 at 10.44.31 AM1
Breaking Dawn Part 2 hit theaters Friday

The “Twilight” saga may be coming to an end, but it has yet to lose steam.

Fans of Edward Cullen and Bella Swan came out in droves, helping “Breaking Dawn — Part 1″ debut to an estimated $72 million, according to Box Office Mojo.

The fourth installment of the movie debuted Friday to the third-highest opening day ever, behind “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2” and another movie from the Twilight saga—“New Moon.”

It fell just short of “New Moon,” which brought in $72.7 million during its first day in theaters.

According to the box office tracking website, $30 million of Friday’s earning came from midnight showings alone, meaning Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner and Kristen Stewart still no how to attract the young crowds who are willing to see the movie into the early morning hours.

Despite poor reviews, loyal fans came out in force to help propel the movie to the No. 1 spot.

According to the movie rating website Rotten Tomatoes, only 27 percent of critics gave the movie a positive review. But fans, on the other hand, backed up the wolf pack and vampire coven, with 92 percent of fans giving the movie 3.5 stars or higher.

The movie—based on the series by author Stephanie Meyer—has become a worldwide phenomenon since the first book came out. The first movie was released in 2008.

Here’s how the three previous films fared domestically:

Twilight (2008): $192,769,854

New Moon (2009): $296,623,634

Eclipse (2010): $300,531,751

Following in the footsteps of another global powerhouse—“Harry Potter”—“Breaking Dawn” will be released in two parts.
Part two is expected to come out some time next year.

Falling way behind on its opening day at No. 2 was “Happy Feet Two” with $5.9 million.

Also finishing in the Top 5 on Friday was “Immortals,” “Jack and Jill,” and “Puss in Boots.”