Although it might not have broken any records, the North American opening day total for "Iron Man 3" surely gave Tony Stark -- and Marvel and Disney -- something to be happy about. The film brought in $68.3 million on its first day of release, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
That number includes $15.6 million that was earned at advanced "midnight" screenings, some of which actually started on Thursday outside of the Eastern time zone. The film also continues to perform well internationally, already surpassing the international totals for "Captain America: The First Avenger," "Iron Man" and "Thor." The North American box office results thus far put the movie's global total somewhere north $450 million, according to THR.
"Iron Man 3"'s Friday box office beat the $51 million that its predecessor, "Iron Man 2, " brought in on its opening day in North America, but falls short of the $80 million "Avengers" earned. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part II" earned $91 million on its first day, the current industry record.
But Stark might get the last laugh over Potter. Box office estimates say "Iron Man 3" will earn anywhere between $165 million and $170 million domestically this weekend, which is a bit lower than earlier estimates but could still best the final "Potter" film's $169.2 million. If not, the film might have to settle for being the No. 3 top opener of all time, if it can beat "The Dark Knight Rises," which earned $160.9 million when it opened last summer.