PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Surprise, surprise: not only did Harry Potter open huge, as expected, it set the all-time opening-weekend record, which wasn’t expected.

On what could only be called Harry Potter weekend, as a movie era ended, the eighth and final Harry Potter fantasy earned over $168-million, running off and hiding with the box office crown.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 set the midnight-screenings record on Thursday night, shattered the single-day record on Friday, and then obliterated The Dark Knight‘s record for the biggest opening weekend in movie history.

Last weekend’s leader, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, was second with $21-million.

The holdover dark comedy, Horrible Bosses, took third with $18-million.

The weekend’s only other new mainstream release — the animated Winnie the Pooh — took in $8-million, good for sixth place.

Overall, with the wizardly Harry leading the way, industry-wide totals left the numbers from last year’s counterpart weekend in the dust.

Reported by Bill Wine, KYW Newsradio 1060

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