This is an excerpt from a Times article on LoTR and Harry Potter:
The competition between Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter- the sibling rivals of the AOL Time Warner entertainment family- is intense. Last year’s Fellowship of the Ring, the first of three J.R.R. Tolkien-based movies to be released by the company’s New Line division, came in second at the box office behind Harry Potter. Unlike Potter, however, it ended up on numerous cities’ best-of-the-year lists and revieved 13 Oscar nominations, including Best Picture (The Sorcerer’s Stone recieved only three.)
This time it’s widely assumed in Hollywood that Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, set for release on Dec.18, will outgross Chamber of Secrets. Potter mania seems to have quieted a bit, in part because Rowling hasn’t published a book in two years.
The article also says that the third Harry Potter movie, Prisoner of Azbaban, won’t come out until 2004. That means that Return of the King will get all the views in 2003!