Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy congratulated Marvel Studios for its success with Avengers: Infinity War. Of course, both blockbusters fall under the Disney umbrella, but Kennedy's biggest recent success has easily been the revived Star Wars franchise. The Force Awakens hit theaters to appropriately massive fanfare back in Dec. 2015, racking up the biggest opening weekend ever seen at the box office at the time.
Then, along came Infinity War. The latest from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, easily the most anticipated movie event of 2018, set multiple records of its own in its opening weekend, including a new worldwide benchmark of $640 million. It also beat out The Force Awakens' domestic opening with a new record of $258 million in the U.S. alone. You may think Lucasfilm execs wouldn't be happy to see TFA knocked off its perch, but publicly, Kennedy was gracious in defeat.
You can check out Kennedy's congratulatory message for Infinity War below, via the Star Wars Twitter account. Kennedy congratulates Infinity War for "the biggest opening weekend in history" in a handwritten note, accompanied by an image of a lightsaber being handed off to Iron Man in a passing-of-the-torch moment. This comes on the heels of the latest reports on Infinity War's definitive victory at the box office, which also beat The Force Awakens' opening weekend record in Canada in addition to the U.S. Kennedy identified herself when signed the note "from Kathy and everyone at Lucasfilm!"
Deadpool's Ryan Reynolds also congratulated Marvel for Infinity War's success, but still can't join the Avengers. The Force Awakens is still well ahead of Infinity War with its worldwide total of $2.06 billion, but the latter is already more than a quarter of the way to that mark. Infinity War garnered strong reviews overall and solved a lot of problems within the MCU, so there's a good chance it will have more than enough staying power to cross the $2 billion mark. Domestically, it's already out-grossed the entire totals of six other MCU movies.
Kennedy may be offering an amiable message of congratulations here, but she'll go back to rooting for Star Wars in less than a month's time, when Solo: A Star Wars Story hits theaters on May 25. At the end of the day, this is all good news for Disney. It's a very healthy competition between Lucasfilm and Marvel Studios for box office supremacy, a battle that should only continue with Star Wars: Episode IX and Avengers 4 both due out in 2019. Even if Marvel ultimately comes out on top, Kennedy certainly can't be disappointed with how the Star Wars franchise has performed in its recent revival.
Also, it remains to be seen how Infinity War follows up its gargantuan opening weekend. It may be able to pass $1 billion worldwide in less than a month, but it's not necessarily a lock to pass The Force Awakens' worldwide total. Kennedy must feel safe congratulating Avengers: Infinity War for a huge opening while TFA still holds the lead on a global scale.
Source: Star Wars
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 05, 2019