Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is a big box office hit and has received a sizable boost thanks to 3D. James Gunn has been a proponent of 3D since the early days of production on the first film, so it was no surprise to see Vol. 2 follow suit and be made with the enhanced format in mind. This has become a common practice for almost every blockbuster as IMAX and 3D continue to be exploited to not only try and give a more immersive experience for audiences, but also allows for these showings to have premium ticket prices.
The sequel may have only just debuted domestically – and has rocketed off to a $145 million debut – but the international run began the week before. Now in its second weekend in foreign markets, the film has already eclipsed $400M worldwide and can thank the draw of 3D for it.
Disney issued a press release for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 to announce the film has grossed an estimated $428M as it closes out its second weekend internationally. While many expected the film to surpass the original, many would not have expected that 3D ticket sales would be a driving force behind it. According to the press release, 41% of ticket sales have been for 3D showings – equal to $174M of its global total. The top performing markets have been China (99% of sales for 3D), Netherlands (90%), Columbia (85%), Austria (85%), and Germany (80%).
This is only an estimated number right now, so the actual totals that will come in on Monday could raise or lower this total slightly, but this is accurate it continues what was a strong start for the sequel. Guardians of the Galaxy earned $773.3M worldwide, and this worldwide total already has the sequel eclipsing half of that. It will start to get more competition in the coming weeks, but this is exactly the type of worldwide start Marvel and Disney could’ve hoped for.
The wildcard here is seeing just how impressive the film is doing with 3D. This format has continued to be a major focus for Hollywood ever since Avatar showed what was possible, but it is unusual to see a film be so heavily seen in 3D formats like this. Unfortunately, there are a limited number of 3D screens around the world and upcoming releases like King Arthur: Legend of the Sword and Alien: Covenant will eventually start to take away some of these screens. Still, Vol. 2 will have this coming week to be the premiere 3D draw, and with good reviews and word of mouth, the sequel should only continue to dominate the box office.