'Eclipse' notches Wednesday boxoffice record

$68.5 million second only to 'Moon' for single-day haul

Summit Entertainment's "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse" has failed to eclipse an opening-day domestic boxoffice record set by franchise predecessor "The Twilight Saga: New Moon."

"Eclipse" rung up $68.5 million in Wednesday coin. That set a new record for first-day boxoffice on a Wednesday, featuring more than $30 million in grosses from 4,416 theaters programming the vampire-romance threequel for midnight Tuesday performances.

But "New Moon" rose to $72.7 million during its first day in release on Friday, Nov. 21, part of a $142.8 million first weekend for the first sequel and its $296.6 million domestic run. So "Eclipse" fell $4.2 million short of matching that for "New Moon."

"Eclipse" is expected to ring up more than $150 million through Monday from a record 4,468 theaters playing the pic starting Friday. Whatever its Friday-Monday haul, "Eclipse" should easily top boxoffice rankings during the four-day Independence Day weekend.

Elsewhere at domestic multiplexes, Paramount bowed 3D family adventure "The Last Airbender" on Thursday and registered $3 million in midnight Wednesday performances. The M. Night Shyamalan-directed pic is expected to fetch $50 million or so through Monday.
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