Wednesday, June 25
“The Dark Knight” became the highest single-day grossing movie in Hollywood history, collecting a staggering $66.4 million in its first 24 hours of release, Warner Bros. said Saturday. The much-anticipated flick, co-starring the late Heath Ledger as a particularly psychotic Joker, soared past the old one-day mark of $59.8 million set last year by “Spider-Man 3.” The huge one-day number indicates “The Dark Knight,” the second installment with Christian Bale as a brooding Batman, could smash the all-time opening weekend record of $151.1 million held by “Spider-Man 3.” The movie - with a reported $180 million pricetag - appears a lock to leapfrog “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” as the biggest first weekend film of 2008. “The Dark Knight” collected a record $18.5 million alone at midnight screenings, besting the old record of $16.9 million set by “Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith” in 2005. While critics are taking the film seriously enough to suggest Ledger could be in line for an Academy Award nomination, the action-packed movie also delivers as pure summer movie escapism.