Valentine's Day taught me two important lessons this month. One: "Don't worry honey, we don't have to do anything big this year" definitely does not mean what you think it means, and is a fatal trap to be avoided at all costs. Two: grey, as it turns out, really is the color of money.
The hotly anticipated adaptation of E.L. James' sadomasochist smash-hit, Fifty Shades of Grey, has spanked box office records, with fans flocking in to make it the biggest international R-rated opening of all time.
Entertainment Weekly pegged the saucy flick's opening weekend takings at a whopping $81.7 million in the US alone, doubling predicted estimates! Strap on the $158 million it made overseas and we're talking about the biggest international opening of 2015 so far.
The kinky movie's runaway success has proved just how ardent of a fan base the book series has built. Either that, or couples were desperate to spice up their Valentine's Day this year, picking up some punishing pro tips from Christian Grey himself before retiring to a private play room to stage their very own dirty remakes.
Tough Love Triumphs
50 Shades of Grey's runaway success has made it the second ever biggest February debut, coming in marginally behind The Passion of the Christ ($83.9 million).
But that's not all. Box office records continue to submit to the cultural phenomenon, with audiences' feverous appetite for BDSM-infused cinema dates netting it the record for the highest grossing Valentine's Day opening of all time, taking down Valentine’s Day’s comparatively limp $56.3 million.
(Not Such) Stiff Competition
Anastasia and Christian's erotic foray trounced Matthew Vaughn's action-comedy, Kingsman: The Secret Service, more than doubling its domestic takings of $35.6 million.
Clint Eastwood's American Sniper continues to prove a steady earner, grossing $16.4 million this week, while The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water found a more family-friendly audience, taking in a respectable $30.5 million.
Have you been to see 50 Shades of Grey yet? Are you surprised by its financial success? Tell us below!