Marvel’s bid to get Avengers: Endgame one, last broken box office record has paid off.
Until July 21, 2019, Avatar was the top-earning release of all time worldwide, with a total of $2.789 billion earned at the box office. Now, Endgame is out in front, with an estimated $1.5 million in weekend ticket sales bringing its grand total to an Avatar-topping $2.790 billion.
The broken record was all but assured by Saturday, which ended with just $500,000 separating the two movies. Disney even sent out a press blast celebrating that, complete with a statement from Walt Disney Studios co-chairman and chief creative officer, Alan Horn.
Of course, in the wake of Disney taking ownership of various Fox studios — including, of course, 20th Century Fox — this news reads a little differently. Disney might not have been in charge when the Fox-produced Avatar broke records a decade ago, but it’s all in the family now.
If you look at Marvel’s big Saturday announcements from San Diego Comic-Con, it’s hard to miss the shift that’s happened. When the Marvel Cinematic Universe first launched a decade ago with the opening movies of what’s now called The Infinity Saga, it was all about introducing the heavy hitters of the Marvel Comics universe: Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Hulk, and, of course, the Avengers.
Phase Four kicks off a whole new saga in 2020, and the first two years of movies are highlighted to a major extent by less mainstream comic book figures. Blade, The Eternals, and Shang-Chi got a lot of attention during Saturday’s panel, as did the first-time solo outing for Black Widow (who may or may not have much of a future in the MCU after Endgame) and the Scarlet Witch-enhanced Doctor Strange sequel.
There’s also the new Thor, which we know for sure will lean in on introducing the Jane Foster version of the superhero. And all that Disney+ stuff! WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Hawkeye, Loki, and the biggest surprise of all, a series based on Marvel’s “What If…?” line of comics.