Avatar Overtakes Titanic As The Highest Grossing Film In US History

When Titanic came out in 1997, it spent a record 15 weeks as the number one film at the box office, lasting from December 19th 1997 to the first weekend in April, when it was moved out by Lost in Space. The film spent nearly 50 weeks in theaters and set the record for highest-grossing film in American history, displacing Star Wars and amassing $600,779,824 total. Avatar took half that time.

Yes, it is official: Avatar has officially trumped James Cameron's previous project in 47 days (just under 7 weeks). According to reports, the film has now grossed $601,141,551 in the USA, making it the new record holder.

This makes Avatar the official #1 of all time both worldwide and domestically, but you can be sure that the internet is going to light up with people questioning the record's legitimacy. In actuality, the film is all the way back at #21 on the list when adjustments are made for inflation, but not only is that the biggest issue, but it isn't even accurate. To be frank, next to nobody saw this film in 2D. The main point of controversy is the cost of the glasses. Box Office Mojo calculates the average ticket price in 2010 at $7.46, and as "inflation-adjustment is mostly done by multiplying estimated admissions by the latest average ticket price," this average does not include the extra $3-4 that people have shilled out for the "added experience" - be it standard digital 3D, IMAX Digital, or IMAX 3D. Much like a baseball player found guilty of using performance enhancing drugs, they might want to put an asterisk next to the record until Avatar's real numbers are calculated.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

NJ native who calls LA home and lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran who is endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.