Avengers: Infinity War is, simply put, a global phenomenon.
The excitement surrounding the movie prior to its release was at a level unlike anything we've seen for prior Marvel Studios releases, and it translated into the biggest box office opening weekend of all time. The film is not only critically-acclaimed, it's struck a chord with fans, providing both thrills and emotional reactions in equal quantities. In fact, audience reception has been so strong, Infinity War managed to hit the milestone of $1 billion worldwide in the record time of 11 days, beating the 12-day record previously held by Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Following a record-shattering debut, Infinity War has showed little sign of slowing down. In its second weekend of release, Marvel's cosmic ensemble managed to earn another $275.1 million globally. Currently, the movie sits at nearly $1.2 billion, making everyone wonder what milestone it will reach next, and which records it will obliterate along the way. With everything we've witnessed so far, with the astounding reception of the film and the trailblazing numbers it has pulled in, it has to be asked whether the film can reach the almost mythical threshold of $2 billion.
In the realm of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Infinity War is almost guaranteed the top spot in box office sales. The movie will easily blast its way past Iron Man 3's $1.24 billion total, if it hasn't already by the time this is published. After that, there are only Black Panther, Avengers: Age of Ultron and 2012's The Avengers left to outgross, films which earned $1.3 billion, $1.4 billion and $1.5 billion, respectively. This third Avengers film is only roughly $300 million away from becoming Marvel's top dog and, considering that it managed to earn more than $275 million worldwide in its second weekend, its crown is all but assured.
Of course, whether it can go even higher than $1.5 billion will all depend on which kind of legs the movie has in the following weeks. From its first to its second weekend, the movie only saw a 55% drop-off in earnings, a remarkable feat for any film, let alone one that made so much money in its first weekend. This means people are still greatly interested in the movie, and that there is a strong word-of-mouth working in its favor. Seeing as how everyone and their mother is talking about the greatness of Infinity War, this isn't all that surprising. Plus, there is also the repeat viewing factor to take into account. Since the film is already proving to be a fan-favorite, many Marvel devotees are going back to the theaters for second, third and even fourth viewings.
For the next week and a half, the movie will remain pretty much go unchallenged, with no other big releases to hinder its box office sales. However, competition will present itself on May 18 with the arrival of the highly-anticipated Deadpool 2. The X-Men sequel will prove to be a strong contender for Infinity War's crown, and it will certainly manage to steal at least a bit of its spotlight. We don't yet know if the Ryan Reynolds-starring movie will dethrone the Avengers threequel from the top spot at the box office, but it seems likely. The only big advantages that Infinity War will still have are the word-of-mouth, and the fact that the R-rated Deadpool 2 isn't exactly a family-friendly affair.
And yet, we still haven't gotten to Infinity War's ace in the hole. Yes, Deadpool 2 will steal some of its thunder, but sales will continue to impress in the next few weeks and throughout the month of May, and it still has yet to be released in China, the second-largest film market after the United States. That's right, all of the impressive records Infinity War has broken since its release have been achieved without the major benefit of China's ticket sales.
All Marvel movies perform incredibly well in China -- Black Panther reached $100 million in two weeks -- and the case should be no different for Infinity War, which is set to hit Chinese theaters on May 11. At this point, the film will be available everywhere across the globe, and will add even more to its worldwide total. At this rate, it should have no trouble hitting $1.7 or $1.8 billion dollars. But the last $200 to $300 million might prove to be a challenge.
Will Avengers: Infinity War reach the $2 billion milestone? It's impossible to say for certain, but while conventional logic would lead you to believe it doesn't seem likely... it just might. The film did manage to exceed estimates for its opening weekend, after all, and by a large margin. What's stopping it from doing the same thing in the next few weeks?
Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, Avengers: Infinity War stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Anthony Mackie, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Olsen, Tom Holland, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chadwick Boseman, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Tom Hiddleston, and Josh Brolin. The film is in theaters now.