Black Panther is now tracking for even bigger domestic opening than previously expected. It's been a long and arduous journey getting T'Challa's story onto the big screen, but it seems as if it was well worth the wait. Ryan Coogler's Black Panther film - based on a script from Joe Robert Cole and starring Chadwick Boseman as the eponymous superhero - is currently the highest-rated Marvel movie ever to release, and all of the hype surrounding the flick continues to push its box office expectations higher.
Box office analysts are estimating that Black Panther will top Deadpool's February opening record with its planned $150+ million debut this weekend, but that number may not be high enough. Black Panther currently holds the record for most ticket presales for a superhero film. Coupling that with the fact that people are literally donating to crowdfunds so that children all over the world can see the blockbuster movie, it's no wonder that the 2018 MCU film is expected to earn big bucks at the box office. And now, it seems like it's projected to earn even more than once thought.
THR reports that Black Panther is now tracking to earn $165 million over the course of its four-day opening weekend (Monday, February 19, is Presidents' Day in the U.S.). That places the film far above Deadpool's 2016 holiday weekend opening of $152.19 million. If Black Panther does rake in $165 million or more over that weekend, it could land the film in the top 5 or 6 superhero openings of all-time. Of course, its 3-day opening would need to be above $141 million to snag Deadpool's actual February opening record.
Earning anywhere above $150 million will garner Black Panther the highest-grossing opening weekend for a superhero's first solo movie within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Right now, that record is being held by Jon Watts' Spider-Man: Homecoming, which nabbed $117 million over its opening weekend in July 2017. The fact that Black Panther is tracking higher than the first solo Spider-Man film set within the MCU - and one that included Robert Downey Jr.'s Iron Man, no less - just goes to show just how much hype is surrounding the film.
With this new tracking, Black Panther will surely hit the $400 million mark domestically as was previously projected. Who knows, if word of mouth keeps up (which it looks like it will), the film can continue on top of the charts well into March. After all, the only upcoming movies that could really challenge Black Panther's reign are A Wrinkle in Time (March 9) and Tomb Raider (March 16) - and those are several weeks away.
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