The Dark Knight does indeed rise:
Several days before it debuts, “The Dark Knight Rises” is generating more audience excitement than the three-highest grossing movies of the last 12 months.
Pre-release research shows director Christopher Nolan’s final Batman movie is exceeding mega-hits “The Avengers,” “The Hunger Games” and the final “Harry Potter” film in the critical “first choice” category that studios use to gauge moviegoers’ interest in their upcoming releases.
As a result, “The Dark Knight Rises” is expected to generate more than $180 million in ticket sales this weekend, according to people who have seen the data but are not authorized to speak publicly. It even has a chance, these people said, of beating the $207-million opening weekend record set by “The Avengers” in May.
There’s been this wonderful trend — starting with Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins — of making real-world(ish) superhero movies aimed just as much at grownups as at the tweener fanboys. A few off the top of my head, apart from Noran’s trilogy, include X-Men: First Class, The Green Hornet, the first Iron Man, and of course, The Avengers. Even the total-fantasy world of Thor involved themes my six-year-old might not even have noticed, much less understood.
It’s a great time to be a fan.