The sequel to the 2007 summer blockbuster, "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen", hit 3,000 theaters in the U.S. and snatched $16 million for the first screening. Imax played the movie on 160 of its large-format screens, all of which sold out.
In late May, director Michael Bay expressed concern over the lack of promotion done on behalf of the film; however, he was satisfied by early June when Paramount ratcheted up their efforts.
As a result, the $16 million opening midnight screening puts "Transformers 2" in a top tier of first-night money grabbers.
Among its companions are last summer's blockbuster, "The Dark Knight," which drew $18.5 million in its first showing, and "Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith," which drew $16.9 million in 2005.
Despite falling short of those two, "Revenge of the Fallen" grossed the most of any film opening on a Wednesday, and outdrew "Dark Knight" in revenue from Imax screenings. "Dark Knight" took in $675,000 last year, but "Revenge of the Fallen" banked $1 million to become the king of the first night Imax.
The robot-strong opening comes in the face of rampant criticism about the films over-reliance on action sequences.