“Spectre,” the most recent 007 adventure, took top spot, debuting to $73 million from 3,929 theaters — a large figure and the second highest in the history of the franchise, it however still trails the release of “Skyfall.” The past film in the long-running series bowed to $88.4 million, yet had better reviews and benefited from being the only new wide-release film in its opening weekend.
Globally, “Spectre” is a juggernaut, raking in $200 million and pushing its overall aggregate to more than $300 million following two weeks in release. With a production budget of $250 million and millions more in marketing expenses, “Spectre” needs to pull in $650 million internationally to break even.
It’s a period of change for Bond. Daniel Craig, who was lauded by pundits for injecting an emotional depth and danger to the character, has implied this could be his last time assuming the part. The search for a replacement has already triggered frenzied speculation about who can take over the series. And Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Eon Productions are weighing distribution offers. Sony’s deal to distribute the Bond films expires with “Spectre,” and though the studio is expected to make a bid to keep the series, other suitors, such as Warner Bros. and Paramount, will aggressively pursue the rights to the franchise.