A cinema chain has reported its biggest weekend for ticket sales in four years, which it attributes to the release of Barbie and Oppenheimer.

Vue International said that a fifth of its customers had purchased tickets to see both films in a double bill dubbed by social media as 'Barbenheimer'.

A meme has developed for many months surrounding the two films, due to the fact they were releasing on the same day and included quite contrasting content.

Barbie, directed by Greta Gerwig, concerns the famous doll venturing into the real world, whilst Christopher Nolan's Oppenheimer chronicles physicist J Robert Oppenheimer’s role in developing the first atomic bomb.

How successful were the two films on their opening weekend?

More than 2,000 of Vue’s screenings for Barbie were sold out, according to the company.

It added the Margot Robbie-starring film will exceed ticket sales for Super Mario Bros and Oppenheimer to become the biggest film of the year.

Tim Richards, chief executive and founder of Vue International, said: “Vue saw its highest weekend admissions since Avengers: Endgame in 2019 with the release of Barbie and Oppenheimer, proving that when the movies are there, our customers will come to watch them on the big screen.

Barbie is tracking to become the biggest film of 2023 and has a good chance of getting into the Top 10 highest grossing films of all time.

“It is an incredibly exciting moment for the industry, and we expect this trend to continue for the coming weeks.”

Alongside this, Universal Pictures said Oppenheimer, which stars Cillian Murphy and Florence Pugh, had made £8.05 million in the UK and Ireland since Friday (July 21).

Another cinema chain in Odeon reported on Thursday (July 20) that more than 200,000 advance tickets had been bought and over 10,000 guests were expected to see both films during the opening weekend.

Barbie is currently tracking to earn more than $300 million worldwide in its opening weekend, whilst Oppenheimer is expected to get to around $160 million worldwide.

Barbie and Oppenheimer are available to watch right now in wide release across the UK