No matter what, the Walt Disney Company knew that this was going to be a good weekend. Black Panther is going so strong that it ran right into the studio's next big feature, Ava Duvernay's A Wrinkle In Time, but now it's a situation where both occupy the top spots at the box office. And as though that news wasn't great enough, the Marvel Studios film reached a milestone that few movies in history have reached. Check out the top 10 below, and then we'll dive into the analysis!
As you can see, Black Panther dropped less than 40 percent in its fourth week of release - making more than $40 million in the process - but as impressive as that is, it's really the minor news. The Marvel blockbuster notably also debuted in China this past weekend, and it proved to be a hit there as well. That brings the international total up to $1,078,615,601, meaning that it has now become one of the few movies in history to ever make more than a billion dollars. To date, only 33 movies have done it (including the Ryan Coogler-directed feature), and it is now the fifth MCU story to cross that threshold - the others being The Avengers ($1.518 billion), The Avengers: Age of Ultron ($1.405 billion), Iron Man 3 ($1.215 billion) and Captain America: Civil War ($1.153 billion). It took only 24 days to make that much money, which is actually the exact same pace as both The Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War, and it's now tied for 11th all time in that respect.
What's incredibly exciting is that it's a bit hard to predict exactly where Black Panther will ultimately end up on the all-time charts when all is said and done. As noted, Black Panther is currently over-performing in China, and there is a chance that it could wind up being one of the five highest grossing domestic blockbusters in history (a move that would push The Avengers out of place). We'll have to wait and see how the film deals with the competition heading its way in the next few weeks (Pacific Rim: Uprising could be the title that ends the movie's reign at the top), but at this point we find ourselves wondering how The Avengers: Infinity War will compare in terms of success.
The money that Disney is making off of Black Panther will probably let them write off any major losses they may encounter in the rest of 2018 - which is good, because A Wrinkle In Time isn't really a monster hit. The $33.1 million it has earned is a touch short of the estimates that emerged over the last week... though the film will certainly wind up being successful in the long run. The budget was kept modest by blockbuster standards (a reported $103 million), and looking ahead it should be able to stick around for a little while. Furthermore, it's a bright and colorful 3D adventure, which are qualities that could wind up seeing it make a good chunk of change overseas. Audiences aren't exactly flipping for it, giving it a "B" CinemaScore, and reviews have been very mixed, but by the end Disney should be able to call it a success.
As far as new releases go, that's certainly the most positive news we have for this week, as the other three new debuts didn't really take-off. Clearly Strangers 2: Prey At Night was the strongest of the trio, but it still only made half of what the first movie did in its first three days back in 2008, and got hit with a "C" CinemaScore. Your eyes have to zoom down the chart to find Rob Cohen's The Hurricane Heist - which is a $35 million feature that made less than 10 percent back in the opening weekend - but that's still better than Nash Edgerton's Gringo. Despite hitting 2,404 theaters, the comedy didn't even make it on to the Top 10, debuting in 11th place with a $2.6 million take.
Before we wrap up, I do want to take a moment to say goodbye to Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle, which will leave our chart next week. It spent an amazing five non-consecutive weeks at number one after opening in second place, and now that it's available for digital download it's starting to disappear from theaters - dropping from seventh to 10th this week. The domestic run has been epic, and the total will probably cross $400 million before it is totally gone. That's pretty amazing, and we look forward to the sequel.