In just three days, Black Widow will finally arrive to kick off the theatrical side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Phase Four, over a year later than intended. As the most lucrative franchise in the history of cinema returns to the big screen for the first time since the summer of 2019, it’s long been predicted that all pandemic-era box office benchmarks will fall to Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff.
However, Vin Diesel and the Fast & Furious crew might have something to say about that. Not only did the recent ninth installment smash the domestic opening weekend record thanks to a debut in excess of $70 million, but it’s also raced to over $125 million in less than two weeks, and only a few days ago became the first Hollywood blockbuster since Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker to reach $500 million globally.
A few weeks ago, Black Widow was said to be tracking for a three-day bow in the $90 million range, and with the movie’s premiere imminent, those projections haven’t changed much at all. The earliest tracking pegged Cate Shortland’s espionage thriller somewhere around $65 million, but as the industry continues to rebound, those figures have been revised to somewhere closer to $80-90 million.
That would be even more impressive when you consider Black Widow is also available to purchase through Disney Plus Premier Access from day one, and previous hybrid titles like Raya and the Last Dragon, Mulan and Cruella didn’t make a major splash at the box office. Then again, this is the MCU we’re talking about, which operates at a different standard to any other brand, so if it performs well enough internationally then F9‘s half-billion dollar tally is a completely attainable goal.