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“Force Awakens” becomes fastest movie to $1 billion

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“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” has reached $1 billion at the box office, reaching the milestone with record-setting hyper speed. The Walt Disney Co. said “The Force Awakens” crossed the billion-dollar mark Sunday, accomplishing the feat in just 12 days. The previous movie to reach $1 billion the fastest was Universal’s “Jurassic World,” which did it in 13 days in June. “Jurassic World” also had the benefit of record grosses in China. “The Force Awakens” doesn’t open in the world’s…

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“Force Awakens” crosses $250M globally after record Friday

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“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” has already surpassed $100 million in North America and $250 million globally, setting it up for a record-breaking weekend. The Walt Disney Co. on Saturday said the film made an estimated $120.5 million from Thursday night previews and opening day Friday. That smashes the previous opening day record of $91.1 million, set by 2011’s “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2.” (Studios count Thursday night grosses as part of opening day.) Disney is projecting…

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Universal theme parks record highest summer attendance

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Harry Potter and the Fast and Furious helped boost attendance at Comcast Corp’s theme parks in Orlando and California. Comcast on Tuesday said the theme parks had their strongest ever summer attendance. The Orlando Sentinel reports the theme park division generated $896 million in revenue for the third quarter. The company attributed the increases to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter-Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Orlando and Fast and Furious: Supercharged at the Hollywood park. Comcast’s NBCUniversal division owns the Universal…

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Superheroes, for once, don’t rule Hollywood’s summer

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After a lackluster 2014 summer, Hollywood has bounced back with one of its best seasons ever. But the most surprising part of the turnaround is that superheroes aren’t the ones who saved the day. Instead, Hollywood’s summer was led by a banner season from Universal Pictures, the lone major studio with nary a cape in its cupboard. With a record-setting $5.3 billion-plus in revenue so far this year, Universal has powered Hollywood to a near record summer with a diverse…

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