It will not surprise you to learn that Disney currently holds nine of the biggest US box office opening weekends of all time. Currently, Avengers: Infinity War is riding high atop the list with a $258 million opening weekend, followed by Star Wars: The Force Awakens with $248 million and Star Wars: The Last Jedi with $220 million.
However, Marvel’s forthcoming event film Avengers: Endgame is currently tracking to blast its way to number one when it opens on April 26 with a whopping $282 million, which will likely lead to another $2 billion+ hit for Disney worldwide.
“Infinity War left audiences with a cinematic cliffhanger,” Jeff Bock at Researcher Exhibitor Relations told Bloomberg about the Endgame prediction. “The only thing that could really affect the opening weekend would be a running time that exceeded three hours, which has yet to be confirmed by Disney.”
Mm. About that, Jeff? It may well indeed be over 3 hours, although the final running time hasn’t been revealed. It’s not that audiences aren’t willing to sit down for a three hour Marvel superhero showdown, though – the vibe among fans is that Endgame could be 100 hours in length and they’d still buy a ticket – it’s that theaters won’t be able to fit in as many screenings per day when the film opens.
In the meantime, Captain Marvel is set to open next week – the first hit of Marvel’s one-two early-2019 box office punches. Pilot-turned-Kree-warrior Carol Danvers’ big screen solo outing is tracking for a $118-$160 million opening weekend box office at present, with full critic reviews set to be published in the coming days.
After Endgame, Spider-Man: Far From Home will open in the summer, and then we’ll be MCU-free for at least a year, which is going to feel very weird after having three MCU films in 2017, three in 2018, and three in 2019, but maybe audiences will be weary at that point and need the break. Very possibly, this lull in Marvel adventures will be the calm before the storm, but we won’t find out the extent of the studio’s Phase 4 plans until later this year.