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Taylor Swift Eras Tour concert film record first-day ticket sales

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Taylor Swift performs in Denver during her Eras Tour, July 14, 2023.

Tom Cooper/tas23 | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images

… Ready for it?

In less than 24 hours on the market, ticket sales for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour concert film have already broken records.

Fandango reported Friday that the singer’s film ranks in the top 10 all-time best first-day presellers, joining the likes of “Avengers: Endgame,” “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and “Spider-Man: No Way Home.”

“Taylor Swift is giving moviegoing fans and the entire industry the ultimate gift by bringing [the] Taylor Swift Eras Tour concert film to the big screen,” said Jerramy Hainline, senior vice president at Fandango Ticketing.

AMC Entertainment reported that Thursday ticket sales for Swift’s film reached $26 million, a new record for the century-old company. Previously, the highest single-day ticket sales record was held by “Spider-Man: No Way Home” with $16.9 million.

IMAX has already sold out more than 250 screenings and is over indexing on presales. The company told CNBC that it is pulling in the same percentage of presales that it would for a blockbuster tentpole feature.

“Instead of launching an event through streaming, it’s being launched directly through the theatrical window,” IMAX CEO Richard Gelfond told CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” on Friday. “It confirms what most of the studios have been saying … that a theatrical release enhances the value of later windows like streaming.”

“While it’s fantastic, I don’t think there is going to be a lot of cookie cutters, because there’s just one Taylor Swift,” he said.

Swift’s concert film documents the wildly popular tour that raked in millions and was on its way to hit a record-breaking $1 billion in sales earlier this summer.

It displaced Universal’s “The Exorcist: Believer,” which announced it would move its release date a week earlier just hours after news broke of the pop star’s drop.

Swift’s concert film was originally slated for just the nation’s largest theater chains, such as AMC, Regal and Cinemark.

AMC, the largest movie chain in the world, has added additional domestic showtimes to increase capacity in response to demand. The nearly three-hour-long film, which arrives in theaters Oct. 13, will play at least four showtimes per day at AMC theaters on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through early November.

Wanda Gierhart Fearing, Cinemark chief marketing and content officer, said in a statement that the film drove “frenzied traffic to our website and app the moment tickets went on sale.”

“We are ready for Swifties to be enchanted by this concert film in the unprecedented number of auditoriums we have booked to meet demand for the shared, musical experience,” she said.

Smaller theater chains quickly requested access to the film, which is set to run through Nov. 5. Before the end of Thursday, most domestic theater chains were offering showtimes in their premium format theaters such as IMAX and Dolby.

Cinema chains told CNBC that most of the Thursday ticket sales were for showings during the concert film’s opening weekend. Box office analysts speculate that Swift’s Eras Tour concert film could capture more than $100 million over its debut.

The film release comes at a time when Hollywood is grappling with dual labor strikes and the departure of films such as Warner Bros. and Legendary Entertainment’s “Dune: Part Two” from the 2023 film slate.

Disclosure: Comcast is the parent company of NBCUniversal and CNBC. NBCUniversal owns Fandango.

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