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`Quantum of Solace` becomes biggest ever Bond at North America box-office

09-Jan-2009 • Quantum Of Solace

As projected by MI6 before the film opened, "Quantum of Solace" has raked in $167.1 million at domestic box offices becoming in current dollars the highest grossing James Bond movie in the United States and Canada, the studio behind it told Reuters on Thursday.

The film surpassed 2006's "Casino Royale," the previous Bond movie, which made $167 million in the United States and Canada. "Casino" still holds the worldwide box office record for the franchise with $594.2 million.

Since it opened on Nov. 14, "Quantum" has made $550 million worldwide, said studio Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Corp's Sony Pictures Entertainment. The film is still playing in theaters, and has yet to open in Japan.

"It is always gratifying when the audience responds to a film, but to be working with a character as successful as James Bond and see the two films Sony has handled become the two most successful films in the history of the franchise makes us all tremendously proud," Sony Pictures worldwide marketing and distribution chairman Jeff Blake told Screen Daily.

The story is very different across the Pond in 007's native Britain. "Quantum" is just shy of $80m compared to "Casino Royale"s record-breaking $106m in the UK. Back in October, MI6 projected that progress in the UK would tougher despite record openings. "Quantum" proved critic-proof as mixed reviews failed to impact negatively on its record breaking opening weekend, but drop off was greater than "Casino" as word of mouth was not as positive.

But adjusted for inflation, "Quantum of Solace" and "Casino Royale" trail the U.S. and Canada box office revenue of the 1965 Bond movie "Thunderball," which has an adjusted total of $538.6 million, according to tracking firm Boxofficemojo.com.

"Quantum of Solace" was produced in a partnership between Columbia and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. Columbia oversaw production, marketing and distribution, but MGM will handle DVD distribution.

Starting with the next Bond movie, the franchise returns to closely held MGM.

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