This weekend, another box office record will succumb to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, in what’s already been an epoch-making year at the ticket booth for the highest grossing film franchise of all-time.
According to Deadline, Black Panther will surpass $700 million at the domestic box office by Monday morning, making the Ryan Coogler-directed feature the third film ever to top that mark, behind only Avatar ($760M) and Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($936M). T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) and company began their theatrical run way back on February 16th earlier this year, when the pic quickly set the box office record for highest grossing President’s Day weekend ($242M) which, given the reputation of Marvel Studios, shouldn’t be all that surprising.
After all, shattering a box office record or two is nothing the studio, or the eighteenth MCU installment, for that matter, hasn’t done before. Black Panther, holder of an A+ CinemaScore and a 97% Certified Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, became the first African-American feature to earn more than $1 billion and can currently lay claim to the third biggest haul in a second weekend of release ($111M), trailing only Avengers: Infinity War ($114M) and Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($149M).
For an example of the domination Marvel Studios has exhibited at the ticket booth this year, last month, the domestic box office crossed the $6 billion threshold in 2018, making June 27th the earliest it’s ever reached that total. $1.37 billion of that new touchstone can be attributed to the Marvel Cinematic Universe and more specifically, Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War.
Need more proof? The weekend of June 29th – July 1st marked the first time an MCU movie wasn’t inside the box office top ten since February. Are you impressed yet? You should be, and believe it or not, 2019 looks to be an even bigger year for the studio with Captain Marvel, Avengers 4 and Spider-Man: Far From Home. Suffice it to say, we can’t wait.