While Marvel Studios was able to build its MCU on the back of more famous heroes like Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, and Thor, another big focus of the enterprise so far has been establishing some of the company's lesser-known characters with the masses at large that don't generally read comics. So far, this effort has met nothing but success with heroes like Ant-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Black Widow becoming huge fan favorites and a draw unto themselves.
Another hero whose tale was unlikely to be too familiar to moviegoers not already well-versed in comic books was Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), who got his MCU origin story last year. The journey of Stephen Strange from overly cocky surgeon to wizened sorcerer was thankfully met with widespread acclaim from both critics and audiences, cementing Strange as yet another Marvel character likely to get future solo efforts within further phases of the ever-expanding MCU schedule.
Now, after 19 weeks, CBM reports that Doctor Strange has officially ended its domestic theatrical run to the tune of $232 million total earned. In addition to that quite healthy domestic total, Strange has also racked up an additional $444 million internationally, for a total haul of $677 million worldwide. Having quadrupled its $165 million production budget, Strange has ended up as yet another huge success for Marvel.
Domestically, Doctor Strange now occupies the #9 spot on the all-time MCU chart, sitting right between Captain America: The Winter Soldier with $259 million, and Thor: The Dark World with $206 million. Strange sits at an even higher perch worldwide, at the #7 spot, still between Cap 2 and Thor 2 (the discrepancy in numbering is due to the fact that Iron Man and Iron Man 2 both performed much better domestically than they did overseas). This means that while Scott Derrickson's movie is an undeniable hit, it's not quite a Guardians level breakout, possibly tempering where the Sorcerer Supreme will go in the future.
When it comes to films released in 2016, Doctor Strange is the #13 best performer domestically, coming in just shy of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them's $233 million total. Of the films topping Strange on the 2016 domestic list, four of them are fellow superhero movies - Captain America: Civil War, Deadpool, Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Suicide Squad, further showing its limitations. That said, Strange did easily beat out X-Men: Apocalypse, which maxed out at $155 million.
Before any potential further standalones, Stephen Strange will be back in Thor: Ragnarok for a brief appearance where he teams up with the God of Thunder and Loki, before a pivotal role in next year's Avengers: Infinity War.
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) release date: May 05, 2017
- Black Panther (2018) release date: Feb 16, 2018
- 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