The hit new "Spider-Man" became the first billion-dollar-grossing film of the pandemic era over the Christmas weekend, reaching the milestone while holding firmly to the North American box office top spot, industry watcher Exhibitor Relations said Sunday.
"Spider-Man: No Way Home," British star Tom Holland's third solo outing in the wildly popular role, has grossed $467.3 million in North America and $587 million internationally, raking in more than $1 billion over 12 days and proving analysts' predictions that it could reach the milestone sum.
It rocketed to that benchmark at a speed only matched by 2015's "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," according to industry outlet Variety, and comes even as the rapid spread of the omicron COVID-19 variant casts a pall over holiday outings worldwide.
Sony's latest installment to the comic-inspired series took an estimated $81.5 million in North America for the three-day period over the Christmas weekend, holding its top spot after scoring the third-biggest domestic opening of all time with more than $260 million, smashing early estimates.
Its debut box office sales trailed only 2019's "Avengers: Endgame" ($357 million) and the previous year's "Avengers: Infinity War" ($258 million), according to the BoxOfficeMojo website.
With an estimated $23.8 million, "Sing 2," Universal's star-studded animated jukebox musical follow-up to "Sing," was this weekend's runner-up.
It beat out two other new series installments: "The Matrix Resurrections" from Warner Bros, which sees Keanu Reeves reprise his iconic role as Neo, underperformed at $12 million.
In fourth place, also earning less than expected, was 20th Century's spy prequel to the "Kingsman" films, "The King's Man," with $6.4 million.
Lionsgate's "American Underdog" -- based on the true story of Kurt Warner, who went from stocking shelves at a grocery store to National Football League MVP -- slid in at number five on its opening weekend with an estimated $6.2 million.
Rounding out the top 10 were:
"West Side Story" ($2.8 million)
"Licorice Pizza" ($2.3 million)
"A Journal for Jordan" ($2.2 million)
"Encanto" ($2 million)
"83" ($1.8 million)