‘Spider-Man’ Spins $35 Million Opening Ahead of July 4

“The Amazing Spider-Man,” Sony Corp. (6758)’s restart of the hit movie franchise with Andrew Garfield taking the title role, generated $35 million in opening-day ticket sales at U.S. and Canadian theaters.

Sony released the film July 3 to capitalize on yesterday’s U.S. Fourth of July holiday. The figure includes $7.5 million from midnight screenings, researcher Hollywood.com Box-Office said yesterday in an e-mailed statement.

The movie, Sony’s second’s big film of the summer, revives a franchise that took in $2.55 billion in worldwide ticket sales from three pictures, according to researcher Box Office Mojo. This version has a new cast, with U.K.-raised Garfield replacing Tobey Maguire. Garfield played Facebook Inc. co-founder Eduardo Saverin in “The Social Network” and is onstage as Biff Loman in “Death of a Salesman” on Broadway.

“It’s a solid one-day opening and ‘Spider Man’ is expected to be one of the summer’s strongest movies, given the strength of the franchise over the years,” said Paul Sweeney, a media and entertainment analyst for Bloomberg Industries.

Garfield portrays the orphaned Peter Parker, coping with a crush on high-school classmate Gwen Stacy while trying to unravel the mystery behind his parents’ disappearance. A visit to a high-tech research laboratory results in a spider bite that endows him with extraordinary powers.

Photographer: Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Actor Andrew Garfield arrives at the premiere of Columbia Pictures' 'The Amazing Spider-Man' at the Regency Village Theatre on June 28, 2012 in Westwood, California. Close

Actor Andrew Garfield arrives at the premiere of Columbia Pictures' 'The Amazing... Read More

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Photographer: Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Actor Andrew Garfield arrives at the premiere of Columbia Pictures' 'The Amazing Spider-Man' at the Regency Village Theatre on June 28, 2012 in Westwood, California.

Emma Stone is featured as Stacy. Martin Sheen and Sally Field co-star as Peter’s Uncle Ben and Aunt May.

Sales Forecast

“The Amazing Spider-Man” is benefiting from critical praise. Of 168 reviews compiled on Rottentomatoes.com, 123, or 73 percent, were positive as of July 3.

Outside North America, where it was released in some markets this past weekend, the movie has made more than $50 million, according to Box Office Mojo.

“Based on this Tuesday performance, Spidey could do a lot better than the $110 million to $120 million originally expected for the first six days,” Paul Dergarabedian, president of Hollywood.com’s box office division, said in the statement.

The film set a record for box-office sales on a Tuesday, surpassing “Transformers,” which took $27.9 million on July 3, 2007, according to Dergarabedian. Over last year’s July 4 holiday, the sequel “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” made $180.7 million in its first six days.

The last Spider-Man movie to open over the July 4 holiday, “Spider-Man 2,” made $180.1 million in its first six days in 2004.

Studio Ranking

The original series co-starred Kirsten Dunst as Mary Jane Watson, a subsequent girlfriend in the Marvel Comics series. Cliff Robertson played Uncle Ben and Rosemary Harris portrayed Aunt May. The last film in the trilogy was released in 2007.

U.S. American depositary shares of Sony, based in Tokyo, gained 0.5 percent to $14.27 on July 3 in New York and have declined 21 percent this year.

The company’s Culver City, California-based Sony Pictures ranked third this year in domestic box-office revenue with $785.8 million as of July 1, according to Box Office Mojo.

The studio’s top film this year is the May 25 release “Men in Black 3,” with $170.2 million in U.S. and Canadian sales, according to the researcher.

To contact the reporters on this story: Michael White in Los Angeles at mwhite8@bloomberg.net; Douglas MacMillan in San Francisco at dmacmillan3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net

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