Marvel Studios continues to have monumental success with their big screen adaptation of The Avengers. The movie crossed the $100 million mark in its second weekend of release, while also crossing the $1 billion worldwide mark 19 days after its first opening overseas. Now, we can chalk up yet another record: The Avengers has made $600 million at the U.S. domestic box office, and has achieved a global haul of $1,438.3 million (or 1.4 billion dollars), ranking it as the 3rd highest-grossing film of all time (behind James Cameron’s Avatar and Titanic).
For those keeping count: This also means that Avengers has unseated The Dark Knight as the highest-grossing comic book movie ever.
Those who were worried that the superhero movie genre was in danger of burning out after the overload of 2011 – what with Thor, Green Lantern, X-Men: First Class and Captain America all achieving mild success – need not worry any longer. With earnings like this, you can be sure that movie studios are going to once again run back to the same well, hoping to have their own drink of Marvel’s success.
For superhero movie fans, this news will be most welcome; though it remains a point of high interest to see if Sony fares even a fractionally as well with The Amazing Spider-Man - and of course, the big point of debate: whether or not Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy finale, The Dark Knight Rises will be able to do well as The Dark Knight‘s $1 billion worldwide ($533 million domestic) box office haul – without iconic characters like The Joker, or the interest spurred by real-life incidents like the death of Heath Ledger.
The other side of this equation is the question of how Marvel will fare during “Phase 2″ of their movie universe building. With several rumored films on the way – Ant-Man, Black Panthe, Guardians of the Galaxy - and sequels to their solo character films already in production – Iron Man 3, Captain America 2, Black Panther, it remains to be seen if the masses will turn out with as much enthusiasm for these smaller-scale projects, or if we perhaps will have to wait until Avengers 2 comes around to see Marvel Studios set this level of precedent again.
Of course, these are all small matters to be concerned about at this juncture; The Avengers is a massive success, a good movie to boot (read our review) and the movie fantasies of comic book geeks everywhere will continue to become realities. What’s not to smile about?
The Avengers is now in theaters; and if you haven’t placed your orders for the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase One – Avengers Assembled collection, you better click the preceding link and get on that now!