This Is It Makes $2.2 Million on Opening Day

Posted on October 28, 2009

The Michael Jackson documentary This Is It grossed $2 million in its opening day. Sony held 18 premieres all over the world, with the biggest premiere happening in Los Angeles. The movie has gotten rave reviews from critics. The film was distilled from 80 hours of rehearsal footage from what would have been Michael's comeback concert series starting in London.

The global preem was held Tuesday in order to line up with foreign territories' usual opening days -- films typically bow on Wednesdays in France, for example. The 6 p.m. Tuesday start time in Los Angeles translated to 2 a.m. Wednesday over most of Europe, meaning thousands of fans flocked to screenings in the middle of the night.

The film is playing in roughly 3,500 theaters domestically. It opened in 99 countries including the U.S. and Canada, and expands to 110 territories around the world, with 15,000 prints, this weekend. Plans are for a two-week run.

Sony already is starting to generate big returns for the $60 million it paid concert promoter AEG Entertainment for 100 hours of footage and distribution rights. The first showings of the film earned an estimated $2.2 million in Tuesday night shows domestically and roughly the same amount Wednesday, for a total $4.4 million for two days.


Sony executives declined to disclose financial details of the big-scale preem, but the studio did manage to contain costs in several ways. The only after-party for the premiere took place in L.A., with food catered by Wolfgang Puck, who has a deal with L.A. Live for events, as well as by In-n-Out, Hot Dog on a Stick and Korean BBQ vendor Kogi.

The behind the scenes look at how Michael worked and supervised every minute detail of the show gives a never before seen look into the King of Pop's work ethic. It shocked many people how good a shape Michael was in during the grueling rehearsals.

Overseas grosses are expected to be high.

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