There’s A Party Going On Over At Marvel

7 hours ago

We all knew Black Panther was going to be big. Every first weekend opening of a Marvel movie is some fashion of big. The question with Black Panther was always going to be how big. Well, if the early estimates hold, it will go down as the second biggest MCU opening in history. That’s how big. Not bad for a character who wasn’t in the original Avengers lineup.

1. Black Panther

$192,023,000 Total: $192,023,000


THTRS: 4,020

2. Peter Rabbit

$17,250,000 Total: $48,222,542

LW: 2

THTRS: 3,725

3. Fifty Shades Freed

$16,940,000 Total: $76,134,455

LW: 1

THTRS: 3,768

4. Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle

$7,945,000 Total: $377,623,575

LW: 4

THTRS: 2,800

5. The 15:17 To Paris

$7,685,000 Total: $25,432,717

LW: 3

THTRS: 3,042

6. The Greatest Showman

$5,100,000 Total: $154,478,356

LW: 5

THTRS: 1,936

7. Early Man

$3,150,000 Total: $3,150,000


THTRS: 2,492

8. Maze Runner: The Death Cure

$2,525,000 Total: $52,005,126

LW: 6

THTRS: 1,829

9. Winchester

$2,230,000 Total: $21,860,179

LW: 7

THTRS: 1,479

10. Samson

$1,972,000 Total: $1,972,000


THTRS: 1,249

To offer a little perspective for Black Panther’s astronomical opening weekend, the highest grossing debut weekend in MCU history belongs to the first Avengers, which made $207,000,000 and change. Third place belongs to the second Avengers, which grossed $191,000,000 and change. Captain America 3 and Iron Man 3 are both in the $170,000,000s. Then there’s a huge drop down to Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol 2, which is short of $150,000,000. In case if you’re wondering, The Incredible Hulk is last at just over $55,000,000. Long story short, these Black Panther numbers have to be better than even Marvel’s most generous estimates.

As happens every time a movie opens with double take numbers like this, there will be a lot of speculation surrounding why. Are the numbers this amazing because Black Panther is a diverse lead who represents a break from the standard white male protagonists we usually get (with the occasional exception)? How much of the success is due to gushing reviews (97% fresh)? How much of it is lack of competition? A February opening date? Great trailers?

Well, we’ll never know exactly, but given the huge buzz the film generated even before anyone had seen it and the $800,000,000 plus Wonder Woman generated at the box office, it’s fair to say diversity and/ or a desire to see new faces represented does have something to do with it. So, expect to see a lot more opportunities for diverse superheroes moving forward, as well as some unconventional release dates against weak competition.

Beyond Black Panther, the only other two movies to see grosses over $10,000,000 were Peter Rabbit and Fifty Shades Freed, according to Box Office Mojo. With budgets in the $50,000,000 range, both flicks will likely eventually see a profit, though neither is likely to generate the windfall their studios were likely hoping. If Eric were here, he’d probably offer some fun analysis or references for these films, but since I’m the fill-in guy, I’m going to instead remind you that in the last week, we’ve written stories here at CinemaBlend both about Fifty Shades fans having sex outside Jamie Dornan’s house and Peter Rabbit fans getting angry about a food allergy scene. You just never know what to expect when a movie is released.

In addition to Black Panther, two other movies debuted this weekend: Early Man and Samson. Unfortunately, despite opening in 2,494 and 1,249 screens respectively, neither film was able to eclipse more than $4,000,000, which is not ideal. Then again, given I work in the industry and am only vaguely aware of either of these movies, the small grosses probably shouldn’t come as a shock.