As Warner Bros.’ Superman Returns soared at conventional theaters over the Fourth of July weekend, Superman Returns: An IMAX 3D Experience shattered every opening-week record for a simultaneous release of a Hollywood motion picture. Imax Corp. reports that the superhero pic earned $6.83 million for a record seven-day per-screen average of $89,804. In addition to performing to sell-out crowds domestically, the flick broke IMAX’s international record by taking in an average of $67,888 on 11 screens. The film will launch at 24 more large-format venues in the coming weeks.
“The IMAX 3D release of Superman Returns is off to an incredible start in Asia and based on strong pre-sales in Europe, it looks like this is the beginning of a worldwide success story,” says Veronika Kwan-Rubinek, president of international distribution for Warner Bros. Pictures.
IMAX Corp. used its proprietary 2D to 3D conversion technology to render approximately 20 minutes of Superman Returns in stereoscopic 3D. During four select sequences of the film, a visual cue designed by director Bryan Singer indicates when audiences should put on and remove their IMAX 3D glasses. Among other things, the technology affords moviegoers an enhanced look at the movie’s extensive visual effects work provided by Sony Pictures Imageworks, Framestore CFC, The Orphanage, Rhythm & Hues, Frantic Films Pixel Liberation Front, Digital Neural Axis, New Deal Studios Inc., Rising Sun Pictures, Lola Visual Effects and Photon VFX.
Over the long holiday weekend, Superman Returns raked in more than $106 million domestically. Despite setting records for an IMAX opening, the movie still has a long way to go to catch up with the 3D version of The Polar Express, which has earned more than $60 million at IMAX theaters since opening in the winter of 2004.