Some supporters say Ledger should get a posthumous Oscar nomination
Batman film The Dark Knight has set a single-day box office record by taking $66.4m (£33.2m) on its opening night, distributor Warner Bros has said.
The movie, which debuted in the US on Friday, has surpassed the previous record of $59.8m (£29.9m) set last year by Spider-Man 3, the studio said.
Directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Christian Bale as Batman, it cost $185m (£92.5m) to make.
Critics have praised the film, which also stars the late actor Heath Ledger.
"We have been thrilled by the response to The Dark Knight, first from the critics and now from audiences," said Dan Fellman, Warner's head of distribution.
Ledger, who died following a drug overdose in January aged 28, played the Joker.
Some supporters have suggested that he should get a posthumous Oscar nomination.
Last week Ledger's co-stars paid tribute to him at the world premiere of the film in New York.
"We're very proud of the film," said Fellman.
"It's the magic of the movie business, how one film just stands out above the others."
The Dark Knight will be premiered in the UK on 21 July.
The last Batman movie, Batman Begins, in 2005, grossed nearly $49 million (£24.5m) in its first weekend in North America.
It went on to collect about $372 million (£186m) worldwide.