‘Iron Man 3′ Joins The Billion Dollar Club

Published 2 years ago by

Iron Man 3 Box Office Iron Man 3 Joins The Billion Dollar Club

Much to the chagrin of North American comic readers and moviegoers, Iron Man 3 - not unlike Star Trek Into Darkness – opened a full week early in many international markets, even earlier in some regions. For Disney and Marvel Studios, the release schedule paid off as Iron Man 3 not only beat The Avengers‘ international box office opening, but set new biggest opening weekend and biggest opening day records in multiple overseas locations.

When it did hit North America on May 3rd, Iron Man 3′s success continued and it became the second biggest domestic opening ever, sitting only behind its predecessor, The Avengers. Today, after just 23 days in theaters, the third movie about Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) has crossed the one billion dollar mark.

Keep in mind, Iron Man 3 has only been out for two weekends in its biggest market (North America) so the $1 billion mark is just one milestone of many. With it, Iron Man 3 currently sits just below The Dark Knight on the all-time worldwide box office gross list at #16 with just a nudge over a billion dollars.

If Iron Man 3 can bring in another $30-35 million this weekend (and this is just domestically), it’ll move up several spots, beating out Alice in Wonderland and Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace for the # 12 spot, just behind Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. With international box office receipts though – where its earned more than twice as much as domestic ticket sales so far – it could break the top 10. Needless to say, Marvel Studios and Disney have a lot to be proud of as Iron Man 3 will finish its run, not only breaking the top 10 box office films of all-time list, but by the end of it, potentially in the top 5 if it can bring in another $120 million before it exits theaters. And it will.

Iron Man 3 Wallpaper Wide Shot 570x356 Iron Man 3 Joins The Billion Dollar Club

The Avengers of course, still sits at #3 with over $1.5 billion, stuck behind the wall that is James Cameron (with Avatar and Titanic in the top two spots). By comparison, Iron Man 2 earned just under $624 million without the 3D bonus, before fans had met Captain America and Thor, let alone seen them team up. Next on the docket for Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is Thor: The Dark World coming this fall (currently in post-production), followed by Captain America: The Winter Soldier (currently shooting scenes in Washington) next spring, and of course the new faces of Guardians of the Galaxy late next summer which begins shooting in London this summer.

The big question for Marvel Studios now is how much it will cost to re-sign Robert Downey Jr. to return for The Avengers 2 & 3 since he’s the highest paid person involved with the franchise, earning an estimated $70-80 million for his work in The Avengers and an expected similar super-high payout for IM3.


Iron Man 3 is currently in theaters, Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: The Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1, 2014The Avengers 2 on May 1, 2015, Ant-Man on November 6, 2015, and Doctor Strange sometime after that.

Let me know on Twitter @rob_keyes if you think any of the other Phase Two films will break the billion dollar mark.

Follow Rob Keyes on Twitter @rob_keyes
TAGS: Iron man 3
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  1. A lot. Of that thanks to China allowing it as one of the few foreign films plus arent Chinese ticket costs like the US equivalent of like 50-60$?

  2. Only $70-80? I’ll rent RDJ for the weekend if that’s all he costs. But you probably meant million.

    • Tony Stark: Male Prostitute?

    • There’s no smaller denomination when it comes to RDJ ;)

  3. You can’t deny it’s a fantastic achievement for IM3 in particular how quickly it’s managed to reach the milestone. TDK, TDKR and Skyfall all took a lot longer but then again didn’t have the boost of 3D.

    We will get a more accurate picture of Phase 2 success when Thor comes out in November. IM3 would’ve been big regardless of 3D or the Avengers, but if The Dark World can produce an overall gross of around 700 – 800 million then that will tell us that Marvel’s Cinematic Universe is truly on top.

    • I believe this movie was successful financially, but bad critically, and that just might hurt its future sales. I feel a lot of people lost some interest in the MCU and are looking to Man of Steel now and DC.

      • Iron Man 2 was worse, and had even more potential to hurt the franchise because of its close ties to it. We saw how that turned out.

        • Avengers redeemed ironman from IM 2. If ironman 3 had come last year it would have struggled to get even 800 million

      • Look at the Transformers film series; each film was more financially successful than the last, but general consensus is that the 2nd and 3rd were bad. But the 3rd made 1 billion.

        And I don’t think its right to say that a lot of people lost interest in the MCU, as Thor, Captain America, and Hulk tell completely different and variably interesting stories, so even if they think Iron Man failed them there’s no reason to believe the others will.

      • This movie has a 78% percent on rt. What do you mean bad critically? Most people enjoyed the movie overall. People can still like marvel movies and be excited for man of steel. People are so ignorant thinking you can like dc and marvel films

      • 78% on rotten tomatoes is critically bad?

  4. I have to believe that Downey Jr will be nice and work with Whedon and Company on The Avengers sequel, to keep his salary under control and possibly set up his deal to get more money from the back end, especially when playing Tony Stark (a character he was absolutely born to play) was one of the main roles that helped turn his troubled career around in a HUGE way!! There is no way the sequel can be made correctly without Downey Jr. playing Tony Stark! But truthfully, Chris Hemsworth and Chris Evans will probably have to do the same, with the success both of them are having in their careers right now!

    • As for the recasting of Robert Downey Jr’s IRON MAN…. Firstly, Marvel recast Terrence Howard for Don Cheadle because they wanted Don Cheadle from the very beginning and he was busy doing other things, secondly they recast Edward Norton’s HULK for Mark Ruffalo, well you see, The Incredible Hulk movie didn’t even break even at the box office in the United States… It made $130 million on a $150 million dollar budget. Iron Man 3 just whopped out a billion dollars in 2 weeks flat. Disney would not DARE replace Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow.

      • you have to look at the world wide take. you think the studios don’t count that money as well? it is actual money, regardless of which country it came from (“…not sure what board game this came from” BS/HIMYM), america is not the only place that watched these films.

      • Terrance Howard better at the character the Don Cheadle. And yes but worldwide sales and dvd and blu ray im pretty sure it made its money.

  5. I really hope that ‘The Dark World’ will do well too. I don’t expect it to reach Iron Man 3 numbers, but I hope it will be close to the billion mark too. We’ll have to wait and see. I will definitely watch it.

    It’s a great achievement for Disney/Marvel. Great start for Phase 2, let’s hope things will stay this successful. Because that means more movies for us :D

    • There is no reason THOR 2 won’t achieve the same success as Iron Man 3 by simply being a sequel to Avengers, which it most certainly is by definition of the word sequel.

      1.A published, broadcast, or recorded work that continues the story or develops the theme of an earlier one.
      2.Something that takes place after or as a result of an earlier event.

      consequence – result – continuation – effect – sequence

    • “The Dark World”? Sounds too similar to “The Dark Knight” if you ask me.

      • Its actually 3 movies in 1. The crew of the enterprise travel ‘Into Darkness’ with Thor to ‘The Dark World’ where they meet ‘The Dark Knight’.

        • you win 10 internets for that one!

  6. Is piracy still killing the movie industry?

    I find it hard to keep up.

    • It never killed the movie industry. It only deprived the big shots of their fifth house, the extra large yacht and the Bugatti Veyron for Sunday trips. Those poor, poor people. Oh the suffering.

      On the upside: saw Iron Man 3 today and liked it!

      • i have to say i saw IM3 the 1st 2 times via less than honorable means, then i got to go to the theaters and saw some things that were missing from the version i saw. they got my $, and will again when the bluray comes out. i loved the movie, and hope RDJ gets a good deal again. Avengers 2 & 3, and IM4 ftw!

      • I know what your saying. Those poor poor poor folks on their yachts. Though, to be fair to the people who do work some long hours (i know that it’s not like going to a factory for a living but still) I would rather fork out for a ticket and see the film like it was meant to be seen.

    • I’d personally rather go to the movies, both for the experience of seeing it on the big screen and to show my support for the arts.

    • Piracy probably effects tv shows more, as mentioned movies on the big screen are an experience by itself, where television shows, to some people, what’s the difference wether you pay for it or not. You still see it on the same screen in your own time.

  7. Man, can’t believe Marvel Comics is making more money than DC Comics.

    • …and they’re doing it WITHOUT their two flagship hero titles X-Men and Spider-man! Wrap your mind around that! :) DC has made all their money off of Batman and Superman.

      • well, soon Superman (who will destroy the box office as easily as he could pummel a mugger.)

        • Will it? Good luck to Supes, I hope he destroys box office records, but its not a sure thing. What’s the last thing movie audiences have seen Superman in? Hopefully positive buzz will cancel out the memory of Superman Returns. But even if Superman becomes the summer movie event, it won’t take away Ironman 3s success so far. Man of Iron or Man of Steel. Who cares as long as they keep making comic book movies of this quality?

          • If they keep making comic book movies of IM 3 quality?

            I care. I care.

          • True but im pretty sure the MOS trailers playing in movie theaters is turning that around.

      • If this money train keeps arollin’, they will probably have enough money after Avengers 2 and Star Wars: Episode VII comes out to buy the film rights back from Fox & Sony.

  8. Well that escalated quickly… 4 weeks. That’s just, wow I am speechless.

    With the amount of money like that, they just paid off Disney’s rent (Even though they already own property everywhere).

  9. I can only imagine that amount of cash Disney will be swimming in by the end of summer 2015 when Star Wars: Episode VII comes out. They might as well build a money vault and swim in it a la Scrooge McDuck in Ducktales.

    • i think it was scientifically proven on family guy that that doesnt work. you will basically be hitting a brick wall XD

  10. Well good for Iron man 3, it’s a shame this will only encourage the modern trend of: Half-Assed Storytelling+Amazing CGI= BILLIONS

    • Yep…unfortunately.

  11. I am more interested in Thor than Iron Man personally, but I don’t think that Thir will get very close at the box office. Maybe I’m wrong; I hope so. Thor seemed kind of superfluous in the Avengers…I’ not sure if that matters.

    For what it’s worth, I enjoyed the heck out of IM3 (in 2D!), so I think it deserves to be a success.

  12. Congrats to the iron man 3, RDJ is a legend who made this movie legendary etc. etc. adcocod007@mail.ru But at the same time there is a lot of REALY well shoot movies whith brilliant screenplay that will not have commercial success.

  13. Spoiler Alert! Tony Stark is Iron Man

    • Son of a…??!! You know what, Vader is Luke’s father, Bruce Willis is dead, Leia is Luke’s sister, and the big one, SANTA CLAUSE DOESN’T EXIST!! So take that! :-D

      • Say it isn’t so!

  14. I cant believed I helped

    • I helped twice :)

  15. This movie only did well because of all the hype and anticipation built by the Avengers.

    It was a parody of a real IM movie.

  16. @ Dude

    yeah that, and the global marketing campaign that went with it.

    Picture a single lemonade stand that makes what is referred to as the “best lemonade in town.” That lemonade stand has a competitor who makes lemonade that just isn’t as good. The thing is though, the competitor has 15 stands to the other’s just one stand. The competitor out sells the “better” lemonade stand, not because of quality of product, but quantity of product.

  17. I think IM 3 is exactly like the un-manned suits that fly about in the movie:

    On the outside, it looks colorful, exciting, maybe even mind-blowing… but open it up and look inside and you realize that there is nothing there.

    • Very well put, Doctor…

  18. Actually when Tony Stark was talking to the Mandarin I couldn’t tell if he was telling him the truth or acting the part!

    • It was a twist and I think if we give it too much thought, we’ll just make the movie worse.

  19. Well, without RDJ that figure would gave been lower. He makes us want to see the films.

  20. Lol, ill kill all these “heroes”

  21. Lol, ill kill all these heroes

  22. Lol, ill k*ll all these heroes

  23. Lol ll kill all these heroes

  24. The title of this article pretty much says it all.

    Marvel is absolutely dominating the CBM genre, and clearly will for decades to come. They really have no competition at this point. Man of Steel might do well and I really hope it does, but even if it makes a billion or more, it will not take away from what Iron Man 3 and Marvel have accomplished, in fact nothing can.

    I wish WB/DC had a similar type of brain trust to that of Marvel’s, but they don’t. We get one bad or mediocre movie every few years from WB/DC, while Marvel pumps out great CBM at a pace of two per year. Amazing. If WB/DC ever gets it’s act together, it would be a good thing, because it would be nice to have some competition for Marvel. If that happens, CBM fans everywhere would benefit.

    Congradulations and thank you to Marvel!!!

    • Marvel has only made 2 great CBM in last 6 years Ironman and Avengers. All other movies were just average.

  25. Nice to see IM3 doing this well, promises good also for all future Marvel movies :) Great story and i think this movie brought a lot new fans for MCU.

  26. As I state in http://rmcmillen.hubpages.com/hub/Iron-Man-3-Through-The-Eyes-Of-A-Real-Fanboy …… there is no amount of money that can help convince me that this movie was any good, ever, at all.

    The best of the plot twists within this poopfest?…….. I liked it better when DC and The Dark Knight Rises did it.

    Actually, now that I think about it…. DC seems to continuously find the strength to pick up the slack that Marvel tends to leave around.

    Maybe, just maybe….. they’ll take some notes from one of the four part installment piece started at http://rmcmillen.hubpages.com/hub/Bringing-Cinematic-Justice-To-The-Justice-LeagueAnd-The-DC-Universe-As-a-Whole-Part-1 ………………….. the GREATEST Justice League Ride ever conceived!