When the first Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer landed online, it quickly (and unsurprisingly) became the most viewed trailer ever for the first 24 hours of release. Such was to be expected from the first new Star Wars movie in a decade, not to mention the beginning of a brand new George Lucas-less era of Star Wars lore. However, The Force Awakens’ record has now been broken, and the new reigning champion may surprise you.
Indeed, the first Fifty Shades Darker trailer debuted online earlier this week, and has now become the most-watched trailer in the first 24 hours of release, having been viewed a whopping 114 million times across all digital platforms on its first day of release. The trailer raked in 2.5 million in its first hour alone for its official US domestic Facebook debut.
However, while the US is certainly responsible for a fair share of the views, most of the 114 million views came from international territories, most prominently the UK, Mexico, and France. Yes indeed, the sex-infused franchise is mighty popular in countries that aren’t the United States.
Fifty Shades Darker is, of course, the sequel to the highly anticipated Fifty Shades of Grey, based on the trilogy of novels by author E.L. James. The first film was met with a tepid critical reception and reports of tension between the film’s leading actors, Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson. Nevertheless, the R-rated film grossed a whopping $571 million worldwide, leading Universal to quickly greenlight two further sequels.
Sam Taylor-Johnson, who apparently butted heads with James on the set of Grey, did not return to direct Fifty Shades Darker. Instead, Universal enlisted James Foley (House of Cards, Glengarry Glen Ross) to direct both Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Free, which are being shot at the same time to kill two birds with one stone. James’ husband, Niall Leonard, is penning the screenplays.
So clearly the near-$600 million gross of Grey was no fluke, and despite lackluster reviews, audiences seemed primed and ready to return to the dark BDSM-filled world of Christian Grey when Fifty Shades Darker opens in theaters on February 10, 2017.