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'New Moon' smashes 'Harry Potter' midnight ticket sales record

November 20, 2009 |  9:43 am

NewMoonSoldOut The vampires have beat the boy wizard.

According to four people close to the movie, "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" sold more than $22.2 million worth of tickets in midnight shows last night, beating a record set this summer by "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince."

Two people close to the picture said the exact gross, which is still being calculated by Summit Entertainment, could be as high as $26 million.

In addition, one person with access to ticket sales data said the original "Twilight," which was re-released in theaters last night, collected $1.2 million from rabid fans who turned out.

Morning ticket sales for "New Moon" are also huge, according to the person, already totaling $13.9 million. That's a clear sign the  sequel is on track for a massive Friday at the box office.

Summit is expected to release  official estimates soon.Et-Newmoon20

Update (10:45 AM): Summit's official estimate for midnight ticket sales is $26.27 million. Its official estimate for the gross of the original "Twilight" last night is $1.3 million.

Update (7 PM): "New Moon" is poised to have the biggest day ever at the domestic box office. Details here.

-- Ben Fritz and Claudia Eller

Photo: Tickets for the midnight showing of "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" sold out at a movie theater in Nampa, Idaho. Credit: Mike Vogt / Associated Press