"Top Gun: Maverick" draws biggest weekend opener ever for Tom Cruise

Paramount and Skydance’s huge Memorial Day weekend opener for “Top Gun: Maverick”

shows just how much audiences trust Tom Cruise to continue delivering at the box office, four decades into his career.

Why it matters: "He is really unique," said Comscore senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian.

"He has become this action movie go-to star in an era where stars are becoming increasingly hard to find."

– This is the first Cruise-starring movie to debut with more than $65 million at the domestic box office.

– The film debuted 28% above Cruise's last big hit, "Mission: Impossible — Fallout" in 2018.

By the numbers: The highly anticipated sequel brought in $124 million at the domestic box office as of Sunday evening and $248 million worldwide.

– The film could oust Disney's "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End" as the top-performing Memorial Day opener of all time if it brings in enough ticket sales Monday.

The movie's older audience makes its massive debut even more notable.