Pirates Sneaks A Few Hours Early

Disney has moved forward the opening of “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” by a few hours with 8pm evening shows on Thursday May 24th in the US.

Disney confirmed the move Monday, a day after Sony’s “Spider-Man 3” took the domestic opening weekend record with $151 million in North America- $15 million more than last July’s $135.6 million opening for “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.”

So why the move? Well many are already saying that Spider-Man’s record included early showings at midnight and 3 a.m. shows on opening day last Friday – by doing this it’ll help beat the record. Fact is though, the arrangement was made over a week ago but has only now been confirmed.

Interest in the third “Pirates” film is as high, if not more so than “Spider-Man 3”, but with its longer runtime and more general audience (less inclined to rush out on opening weekend compared with the younger and more male-skewering Spidey fans), beating that record seems tough, even with the new screenings.

The move is also to take advantage of the Thursday night crowd that will be out and looking for something to do as the following day will be a public holiday.

Dreamworks has also moved forward screenings of “Shrek the Third” which will start screenings at 10pm next Thursday. Don’t dismiss it either, “Shrek 2” launched to a $108 million first weekend – and it had already opened on a Wednesday.