After its decade-long development and the separation between the studio and the creative team that brought the project to life, Ant-Man has crawled its way to finally releasing in theaters as one of the must-see movies of of the summer. And that's not just because it's the final chapter of Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe or because it introduces the last two founding members of the Avengers from Marvel Comics. Early reactions from the Ant-Man press junket screening and world premiere paint Ant-Man in a rather positive light, labeling it as one of of Marvel's better features to date.
It's because of that, the Ant-Man is expected to get a boost at the box office from positive word-of-mouth, similar to how Guardians of the Galaxy blew past projections last August, and setting several records along the way.
According to THR, early tracking for Ant-Man has it currently pegged for a $55-65 million opening with expectations that box office receipts will be at the top of that range. As a recap, here are the opening weekend numbers for Marvel's other series firsts, not including the Avengers team-up:
- Iron Man - $98,618,668
- The Incredible Hulk - $55,414,050
- Thor - $65,723,338
- Captain America: The First Avenger - $65,058,524
- Guardians of the Galaxy - $94,320,883
Keep in mind, Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk were both released before the studio made 3D post-conversation mandatory on all future releases.
Ant-Man's $65 million potential opening is a relatively good number given the challenging marketability of Ant-Man and the controversy surrounding the last-minute departure of original writer and director Edgar Wright who was the reason for the project being realized in the first place.
Ant-Man's forecast is comparable to the first Cap and Thor films which were also released in 3D in the summer of 2011. However, given that Ant-Man is riding the momentum of being the 12th MCU film and comparing to Avengers: Age of Ultron ($191,271,109) just weeks earlier and 2015's other non-Marvel box office juggernauts juggernauts (Jurassic World made over $200 million in its opening weekend domestically), Ant-Man's opening haul is not exactly huge bank for the superhero genre. In fact, it's the lowest since Disney began distributing Marvel Studios releases.
It could of course, surprise everyone and surpass the forecast but the estimate goes to show the value of sequels and established characters. Even Thor: The Dark World, which is one of Marvel's weaker entries, earned almost $86 million in its North American debut. Good on the studio then that they're exploring so many new characters including Black Panther, Captain Marvel and Doctor Strange in the next few years instead of relying solely on team-ups and sequels.
What's your box office prediction for Ant-Man? Let us know in the comments!
Marvel’s “Ant-Man” stars Paul Rudd as Scott Lang aka Ant-Man, Evangeline Lilly as Hope Van Dyne, Corey Stoll as Darren Cross aka Yellowjacket, Bobby Cannavale as Paxton, Michael Peña as Luis, Tip “T.I.” Harris as Dave, Wood Harris as Gale, Judy Greer as Maggie, David Dastmalchian as Kurt, and Michael Douglas as Dr. Hank Pym. Directed by Peyton Reed and produced by Kevin Feige, Marvel’s “Ant-Man” delivers a high-stakes, tension-filled adventure on July 17, 2015.
Ant-Man opens in theaters July 17, 2015; Captain America: Civil War – May 6, 2016; Doctor Strange – November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man reboot – July 28, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Black Panther – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – November 2, 2018; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; Inhumans – July 12, 2019.