Peter Jackson's long-awaited The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey opened last night at midnight--did you see it and post your comments here yet?--and it's being reported that it grossed $13 million* in those midnight showings in over 3,000 theaters with $1.6 million coming from IMAX theaters. (*Updated from earlier)
The current December opening record is held by Will Smith's I Am Legend with $77.2 million in 2007, followed by James Cameron's Avatar with $77 million. Considering the latter made $26.8 million its opening day (after $3.5 million in midnights) and The Hobbit has already made nearly half that amount, it stands to logic that Jackson's movie is heading towards an opening day larger than both previous record holders, possibly with closer to $36 million or more, which means it's already on its way to seeing a new December record.
Check back over the weekend for updates to how the film is doing at the box office.