• Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace
    is the second highest grossing movie at the weekend box office, earning $8.1 million.
  • The Phantom Menace
    surpassed Zendaya’s
    and the new horror film
    in box office earnings.
  • The film follows young Anakin Skywalker’s journey and marks the beginning of the Skywalker family saga.

Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace is the second highest grossing movie at the weekend box office. The prequel film is currently in theaters for a re-release marking its 25th anniversary and in time for May 4, which has become known as Star Wars Day. After the credits concluded during The Phantom Menace‘s re-release, there was also an exclusive look at The Acolyte, Disney+’s next live-action Star Wars television series that premieres on June 4.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, The Phantom Menace grossed $8.1 million, with only The Fall Guy beating it out at $28.5 million. The Phantom Menace came ahead of the Zendaya-led Challengers, which earned $7.1 million in its second weekend, and the new horror film Tarot, which opened to $6.5 million. While The Fall Guy is number one at the weekend box office, it underperformed below the expectations of a $30 to $35 million debut.

Why The Phantom Menace’s Re-Release Is Doing So Well

When first released and for years afterward, The Phantom Menace was commonly derided and criticized, and even viewed as the worst film in the Star Wars franchise. Over time, that attitude has drastically changed, with The Phantom Menace and all the prequels gaining greater appreciation. One reason for this is because the generation who grew up with the prequels and who fell in love with Star Wars because of them has grown into adulthood. As such, seeing The Phantom Menace in theaters for the 25th anniversary brings with it a nostalgia that once only existed for the original trilogy films.

In addition to nostalgia, the greater appreciation for The Phantom Menace is largely rooted in a better understanding of the film. Beginning the story of Anakin Skywalker as an optimistic nine-year-old child and the overtly political nature of the story are among some of the narrative choices that confused and frustrated many viewers for a long time. With the prequel trilogy now completed, and with stories like the beloved Clone Wars animated series that have come out in the following years, these narrative choices are better understood and enrich the overall franchise.

The timing of the re-release is also ideal. May the Fourth has become a widespread phenomenon, recognized and celebrated far beyond the confines of the Star Wars fandom. Seeing The Phantom Menace in theaters for its 25th anniversary the weekend of May the Fourth is the perfect way to celebrate. There hasn’t been a new Star Wars film released in theaters since The Rise of Skywalker in 2019, and if a re-released film can perform this well, it is a good sign for the upcoming films in the franchise, the first of which will be The Mandalorian & Grogu, currently slated for May 26, 2026.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Star_Wars_Episode_I_The_Phantom_menace movie poster

Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace

The beginning of the Skywalker Saga, Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace sees young Anakin Skywalker put on his path to discovering his ability to influence the Force. While attempting to thwart the nefarious Trade Federation in their plans for the planet of Naboo, two Jedi discover an exceptionally-gifted slave with the ability to wield the Force. Little do they know, rescuing him is just the beginning of a saga that will span generations of the Skywalker family.  

Release Date
May 19, 1999

20th Century

133 minutes

$115 Million

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