Taking in $48.5 million over the weekend at the North American box office, James Cameron's 'Avatar' has become the first major motion-picture release in film history to be driven almost entirely by 3-D ticket sales.

Indeed, in the U.S. and Canada this weekend, 80 percent of theatrical revenue for the film came from 3-D ticket sales. And, according to estimates from Fox, a staggering $340 million of the film's $429 million domestic tally has come from 3-D engagements. Taking in $48.5 million over the weekend at the North American box office, James Cameron's 'Avatar' has become the first major motion-picture release in film history to be driven almost entirely by 3-D ticket sales.

Indeed, in the U.S. and Canada this weekend, 80 percent of theatrical revenue for the film came from 3-D ticket sales. And, according to estimates from Fox, a staggering $340 million of the film's $429 million domestic tally has come from 3-D engagements.

'Avatar' Trailer


This dwarfs previous 3-D films, including summer releases 'G-Force' from Disney and 'Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs' from Fox, which derived 50-60 percent of their box-office revenue from 3-D sales.

Unlike previous three-dimensional efforts, 'Avatar' -- largely due to its maker's wishes -- has been marketed as a must-see-in-3-D offering from the beginning.

In fact, it was the first major release for which the majority of screens were 3-D. Of the 3,453 theaters secured for the film at launch last month, 2,038 offered the film in the format.

In the U.S. and Canada, only 5 percent of 'Avatar''s 3,422 theater locations this weekend were premium IMAX 3-D locations. Yet, a full 16 percent (or $7.5 million) of the film's domestic revenue was derived by IMAX ticket sales.

The premium 3-D ticket prices, meanwhile, are helping the movie ascend to new box office heights.

Having taken in $1.335 billion worldwide, it's the second highest global grosser ever behind Cameron's last film, 1997's 'Titanic,' which grossed $1.8 billion before it was done.