"On Friday, Avatar wrangled a stellar estimated $27 million on approximately 7,000 screens at 3,452 sites (including $3.5 million from its midnight start). The picture's 3D presentations at 2,038 sites accounted for 58 percent of the gross. Avatar's first day stands as the third highest-grossing ever for a December release." (From IMDb)
Update January 2, 2010: "during the week between Christmas and New Year, the box office seemed on track to chalk up $500 million for the week, a record, analysts observed. (The previous record was set last year following the opening of The Dark Knight, when combined ticket sales reached $396.2 million.) Leading the field was Fox's Avatar, which added another $18.5 million to its domestic gross on Wednesday, bringing it to $268.9 million after 13 days. (Far more impressive, however, is the foreign gross, which stood at $525.3 million on Tuesday.) " From IMDb
Haunting score and theme song awaken memories of Titanic; scenes reminiscent of Cameron's Aliens, Spielberg's Jurassic Park, Gibson's Apocalypto and Rob Cohen's Dragonheart, Avatar's allegory may not be new, but the 3D epic, in ginormous IMAX presentation, is what cinematic spectacular experience is all about, thrilling, breath-taking wonder. Cheers, whistles, applause from IMAX's audience, energy that transported to a technical, special effects planet of daunting monsters, exquisite creatures, and a proud Navi people entwined within a soft love tale, battling an oppressive invading force, you just didn't want to leave, you wanted to experience it again, and again. Avatar has received four Golden Globe nominations, it deserves them all (for 'Best Motion Picture - Drama', 'Best Director - Motion Picture', 'Best Original Score - Motion Picture', and 'Best Original Song - Motion Picture'). Let's hope it receives those awards, and some Oscar nominations too. Cameron's interview:
Thank you to James Cameron, the cast and all who were involved in bringing Pandora to life through such a fantastic movie!