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The Omicron variant of COVID-19 may be spreading across the U.K., seeing West End shows postponed and forcing people to cancel Christmas parties as the government considers imposing tighter restrictions, but it seemingly hasn’t had any impact on the most anticipated superhero release of the year.
Spider-Man: No Way Home landed an opening day box office of 7.6 million pounds ($10.1 million) across the U.K. and Ireland on Wednesday, according to figures from the U.K. Cinema Association. That’s not only a pandemic-era best, beating out James Bond pic No Time to Die, it’s the biggest opening day of all time for a Wednesday.
Spider-Man notched a sizable jump over the 4.8 million pounds ($6.4 million) grossed by No Time to Die on its opening day in late September, which was then the biggest in two years.
The tentpole’s huge launch in the U.K. and several other major markets where it opened midweek are a prelude to what’s expected to be a record-shattering worldwide opening for the COVID era. In North America, it is widely expected to open to $150 million or more, while some think it could approach $200 million. Sony insiders are understandably being more conservative, suggesting $130 million.
Globally, Spider-Man is topped to open north of $300 million.
To date, No Time to Die is the year’s biggest performer by some margin in the U.K., where its total box office is just shy of 100 million pounds. Having overtaken Avatar and Spectre, the film is now fast-approaching Skyfall‘s 103.2 million pounds as the second highest-grossing film of all time (Star Wars: The Force Awakens remains in top spot with 123.5 million pounds).
Spider-Man: No Way Home still has some way to go to come close to matching Bond, however, which is known for having box office staying power compared to other films. After 11 weeks, No Time to Die is currently in eighth position.
Impressive as it may be, No Way Home‘s haul is still short of the U.K.’s biggest opening day box office of all time, a record that belongs to Avengers: End Game, which earned 11.9 million pounds in April 2019.
Pamela McClintock contributed to this report.
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