How successful does Twilight look like it's going to be? Try "Very." Thursday's midnight opening grossed around $7 million, which was above estimates, but is that because everyone is estimating it based upon the wrong guidelines? It's a definite possibility - especially when you find out what movie was used for comparison purposes.Box office tracking site Box Office Mojo wasn't alone in comparing Twilight's midnight haul to that of Sex and The City, earlier this year. That movie, which earned $2.5 million during its midnight premiere, was chosen as a comparison because both movies are "event movies for women" - but Twilight is also a genre movie, albeit a flawed one, so how does it stack up against recent much-hyped genre movies? The Dark Knight, of course, blows it away; their midnight opening grossed $18.5 million, with an opening day of around $65 million. Twilight's opening day is estimated around $30 million, which will also make it less successful than Iron Man, all three Spider-Man movies and the last Lord of The Rings. Most interestingly, perhaps, it also makes it less popular than four of the five Harry Potter movies (Only Chamber of Secrets was eclipsed by Twilight's bow). All is by no means lost, however; it's a stronger start than Quantum of Solace, Wall-E and - much to the relief of Twilight's studio, Summit Entertainment, I'm sure - The Golden Compass, the last movie to be adapted from a best-selling and much-beloved series of YA novels touted as "the next Harry Potter." It's also the third most-popular advance-ticket-sales movie in Fandago's history (Again, The Dark Knight and - curiously, Revenge Of The Sith, are ahead), and - much to Kaila's amusement, I'm sure - the movie's biggest business is coming from Utah, ground zero of Twilight author Stephenie Meyer's mormon religion. Ultimately, how successful will the movie be? A lot depends on this weekend - not just the box office haul, but also the word of mouth. The Golden Compass last year showed how quickly a fan-favorite can be killed in the marketplace by bad buzz, and Twilight's core audience's excitement over the movie was already a cautious one. What'll happen if Robert Pattinson's wooden performance is judged unworthy? We should know by Monday. (Update: Twilight rakes in $35.7 million in its first day, which makes it the 14th most successful opening ever - and the most successful by a movie directed by a woman.) 'Twilight' shining bright at box office [Variety]

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