Box Office Milestone: 'American Sniper' Hits $500M Globally, Becomes Top 2014 Title in U.S.

American Sniper Still 3 - H 2015
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

American Sniper Still 3 - H 2015

Clint Eastwood's film has now earned $337.2 million domestically, passing up 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1'; overseas, 'Sniper' has grossed an outstanding $163 million.

There's no eliminating Clint Eastwood's American Sniper.

The movie achieved two more milestones over the weekend: It's now the top-grossing release of 2014 in North America, while worldwide it has jumped the $500 million mark, a stunning feat considering the subject matter. Sniper stars Bradley Cooper as the late Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, who fought in the second Iraq War and is regarded as the most lethal sniper in U.S. military history.

From Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow Pictures, Sniper finished Sunday with $337.2 million in domestic ticket sales, passing up The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1 ($336.9 million), the previous 2014 champ. In the U.S., the R-rated movie has been unique in galvanizing both Middle America and liberal markets.

Overseas, the Oscar-nominated film, also starring Sienna Miller, has earned $163 million for a worldwide total of $500.2 million through Sunday.

American Sniper is the most successful war-themed film of all time globally, eclipsing Steven Spielberg's WWII classic Saving Private Ryan, not accounting for inflation. Saving Private Ryan, released in 1998, earned $216.7 million in North America and $481 million worldwide.

The performance of Sniper overseas is especially impressive, considering the story's inherent pro-U.S. slant.  At the same time, Eastwood is a known brand around the world, not to mention beloved in several European countries.

“From its record-breaking Christmas opening, American Sniper has been a box office phenomenon. The film’s A+ CinemaScore in every category has translated into enthusiastic word-of-mouth that continues to generate both first-time and repeat business," said Warners domestic distribution chief Dan Fellman, who announced the news alongside president of worldwide marketing and international distribution Sue Kroll, international distribution president Veronika Kwan Vandenberg and Greg Silverman, president of creative development and worldwide production.