The Force is very strong with the Star Wars franchise at the moment. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story has already grossed more than $600 million worldwide after being in theaters for only two weeks and that has helped push the franchise to a very significant milestone: Star Wars has now surpassed the long-running James Bond franchise at the worldwide box office. Given how long the James Bond movies have been part of the fabric of cinema, that is a very significant accomplishment.

According to Box Office Mojo, the Star Wars movies have managed to bring in $7.34 billion worldwide, which gives it the edge over 007. That figure includes the special edition re-releases of the original trilogy, as well as the animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated movie. To date, the James Bond franchise has grossed an impressive $7.04 billion since debuting in 1962. Even with a 15-year head start on Star Wars, Disney and Lucasfilm have managed to assert their box office dominance over the legendary spy franchise.

What is perhaps most impressive about this accomplishment is the number of movies in each franchise. To date, there have been 24 official James Bond movies released theatrically starting with Dr. No in 1962, with the most recent being the Daniel Craig led Spectre, which was released just last year. Star Wars, on the other hand, has only eight live-action movies and the Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated movie, meaning that with one-third of the titles, Star Wars was able to outgross James Bond.

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The highest-grossing movie in each of the individual franchises happens to be their second to last movie. Skyfall wound up being the first James Bond movie to ever gross $1 billion worldwide, winding up with just over $1.1 billion. Star Wars: The Force Awakens was, pardon the pun, a force to be reckoned with. It is now the third highest-grossing movie ever made and the highest-grossing domestic release of all time, bringing in $936 million domestically alone. Overall, it brought in a staggering $2.06 billion. Both of those movies helped to really push the respective franchises to new heights, but nothing could really match the anticipated that was felt heading into Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

The Star Wars franchise is showing absolutely no signs of slowing down, as Star Wars: Episode VIII is due out next year and could easily be another $1 billion (maybe $2 billion) movie. Unfortunately, the James Bond franchise is in a much less certain place as Daniel Craig is still being wishy-washy about returning to play 007 again, so we will have to see what happens with that in the future. By next year, Star Wars could wind up overtaking the Harry Potter franchise in the new year, which currently sits at $8.46 billion worldwide, if you count Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them as part of the franchise. Jedi are apparently more appealing than wizards and British spies, these days.

Ryan Scott at Movieweb
Ryan Scott