Entertainment

'Godzilla vs. Kong' scores $9.6 million opening day, a record for a pandemic release

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Key Points
  • "Godzilla vs. Kong" tallied $9.6 million during its opening night, marking the best debut for any movie released during the pandemic.
  • The Warner Bros. film screened in 2,409 venues Wednesday and will expand to 3,064 locations by Friday.
  • As vaccination rates continue to rise and studios continue to release big blockbusters, theater operators are hopeful that more theaters will be able to open and capacity restrictions will be lifted.

In this article

A still from Warner Bros.' "Godzilla vs. Kong."
Source: Warner Bros.

"Godzilla vs. Kong" tallied $9.6 million during its opening night, marking the best debut for any movie released during the Covid health crisis and signaling a turning point for pandemic-ravaged movie theaters.

The Warner Bros. film screened in 2,409 venues Wednesday and will expand to 3,064 locations by Friday. Friday also marks the first time that around 500 Regal locations will be reopened to the public since October, when the company shuttered locations due to the ongoing pandemic.

Last weekend, around 3,066 theaters were open in North America, according to data from Comscore. That's just shy of the 3,469 that were open over the weekend of Sept. 18 last year, which marked the highest number of open theaters during the pandemic.

As vaccination rates continue to rise and studios continue to release big blockbusters, theater operators are hopeful that more theaters will be able to open and capacity restrictions will be lifted. Currently most theaters domestically are permitted to operate at 50% capacity.

Over the weekend, "Godzilla vs. Kong" was released internationally, securing more than $121 million at the global box office ahead of its Wednesday debut domestically. Around $70 million of that haul was brought in from China, where theaters are open at 75% of audience capacity.

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