By Paul Bond

July 21, Reuters

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - It seems that 4,366 theaters weren't quite enough.

As hype for new box office champ "The Dark Knight" reached a fever pitch over the weekend, moviegoers were surfing eBay and Craigslist for tickets, sometimes paying five times face value for them.

The hottest items were tickets to Imax showings. The movie opened on 94 Imax screens, and company executives did a good job letting folks know that director Christopher Nolan shot many of the biggest action scenes with an Imax camera, making it was the best venue for viewing the film.

All the publicity didn't hurt Imax stock, either: It gained 18 percent last week. "The Dark Knight," meanwhile set a new weekend record by selling $155 million worth of tickets.

The going online-auction price for an Imax "Dark Knight" ticket seemed to be around $50 -- with many sellers asking $60 and many buyers offering $40.

An eBay spokesperson said she didn't recall seeing this many, if any, offers to buy and sell movie tickets on the site before.

And eBay has seen a surge in activity related to Batman in general, with nearly 23,000 items listed on Friday. As for movie-related Batman gear, Christian Bale paraphernalia is the most popular.

The online auction house said that 2,147 collectible items related to Bale's Batman were listed, ahead of Val Kilmer (823), Michael Keaton (768) and George Clooney (184).

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photo: Actor Christian Bale as Batman is shown in a scene from director Christopher Nolan's "The Dark Knight" in this undated publicity photo released to Reuters July 18, 2008 (REUTERS/Warner Bros. Pictures/Handout)