Because opening numbers mean everything for a blockbuster tentpole, tracking early reports for a film like Black Panther is important. Often times, the opening weekend numbers determine whether or not it will get a sequel. But when you have a track record like Marvel Studios, it’s safe to assume that the film will open at number one. How long it will stay there will obviously be up to the audience.
The character first made an appearance in Captain America: Civil War, and proved that he deserved to have his own film as much as his fellow Avengers. Now that standalone film is tracking to earn as high as $120 million at the box office. Check out how it matches with other February films below.
THR was the first to report on the $100 – $120 million opening weekend. The number doesn’t come as a huge surprise considering that it is a Marvel Studios film. And before you go saying February is a dead month for movies, let’s consider how well Deadpool did in 2016. That film opened to $132 million, making it one of the highest grossing films with a February opening. A year before that, Fifty Shades of Grey opened to $85 million.
When you look at it, Black Panther is on track to exceed some of its Marvel Studios predecessors. In 2017, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 had a $146 million opening. A few months later, Spider-Man: Homecoming opened with $110 million, in July. Then in November, Thor: Ragnarok opened with $122 million.
So another $100 million-plus opening isn’t a complete shock. Also, we should take into account the fact that early online ticket sales sold out almost immediately when they became available. While that is an early indicator of how highly anticipated the film is, it should in no way say that it will earn high numbers. That being said, given Marvel Studios’ history and the anticipation surrounding the film, earning at least $100 million would not be a huge shock.
Directed by Ryan Coogler, Black Panther opens in theaters on February 16, 2018.