STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK Returned To #1 At The Box Office For The First Time In 23 Years

There are still no new movies playing in the handful of theaters actually open, and that meant Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back ended up hitting #1 at the box office for the first time since 1997...

Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back was released in 1980 to widespread critical acclaim and an impressive box office haul, and George Lucas' "Special Edition" later followed in February 1997. Now, for the first time in over 23 years, the classic movie has once again hit #1 at the North American box office. 

It's currently leading the charge with an estimated $175,000, and should ultimately end the weekend with between $400,000 - $500,000. That's been about as good as things get these past few weeks, with other reissues like Jurassic Park and Ghostbusters earning a similar amount at less than 500 sites.

Disney actually ended up taking the three top spots at the box office with Black Panther at #2, and Inside Out at #3. Only a handful of theaters have decided to re-open, and much of this revenue actually comes from drive-ins. Those are doing big business right now, and should continue to do so for a while.

The Empire Strikes Back was #1 at the domestic box office for eight weeks following its May 21st, 1980 release, and it stayed in that position for two weeks for the "Special Edition" seventeen years later.

It's still unclear when theaters will be able to re-open, with analysts now predicting that those scheduled August release dates are going to slip into September due to the ongoing rise of COVID-19 cases. 

Did you brave your local theater this weekend?

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