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Star Wars fans feel the Force as advance ticket sales to see film break record

Published 21/10/2015

An image taken from the Star Wars YouTube channel of a scene from the trailer for Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens
An image taken from the Star Wars YouTube channel of a scene from the trailer for Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens

The Force was strong in Star Wars fans after the new film smashed the record for the most advance sales in UK history.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the seventh film in the sci-fi series, sold more than 200,000 pre-sale cinema tickets within the first 24 hours of release - more than any other film, including the new James Bond adventure Spectre.

The upcoming movie also beat previous 007 movie Skyfall and Fifty Shades Of Grey.

Many fans in the UK were left frustrated after some cinema websites crashed and struggled to cope with the high demand when the tickets went on sale on Monday morning at 8am.

The advance sales coincided with the release of the full trailer for the seventh Star Wars film, unveiled two months before the film hits cinemas.

The trailer - which debuted on US television at half-time during an American football game between the New York Giants and the Philadelphia Eagles in Philadelphia and was also released online - opens with Daisy Ridley's character Rey and John Boyega's Finn questioning their places in the galaxy, before new antagonist Kylo Ren, played by Girls star Adam Driver, promises to finish what Darth Vader started.

There are also glimpses of the stars of the original trilogy, with Harrison Ford's Han Solo and Peter Mayhew's Chewbacca appearing, as well as a fleeting glimpse of Carrie Fisher as Leia.

Missing from the footage is Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker but there are sweeping shots of the Millennium Falcon, Storm Troopers and plenty of action accompanied by a soaring score.

Directed by JJ Abrams, the film is a continuation of the saga created by George Lucas and is set 30 years after Star Wars: Episode VI - Return Of The Jedi.

It also stars Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong'o, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels and Max von Sydow.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens opens in UK cinemas on December 17.

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