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Spoilers ahead for Avengers: Infinity War.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe is an ever expanding place, but the shared universe is in a precarious position. The shocking and harrowing events of Avengers: Infinity War changed the MCU as we know it, and it's unclear exactly how the Avengers and Guardians will recover from their innumerable losses. Still, the MCU keeps trucking along, with the Ant-Man and The Wasp arriving in theaters this weekend. Paul Rudd's Scott Lang is getting his second film, with Evangeline Lilly's Hope van Dyne become a full fledged superhero in the process. Anticipation for Peyton Reed's upcoming sequel has been steadily increasing, and now it looks like Ant-Man 2 is going to make a goliath amount of money at the box office this weekend.
The latest estimates for Ant-Man and the Wasp's opening weekend are in, putting the upcoming blockbuster at $80 million for its opening weekend. While not exactly Avengers sized numbers, this prediction proved that Paul Rudd's pint sized hero has staying power in the greater Marvel Cinematic Universe. And with the franchise's OG heroes coming to the end of their contracts, Ant-Man and The Wasp is needed to fill out the ranks, and hopefully help save Thanos' victims in the process.
Despite focusing on a lesser known hero and having a potentially devastating director shakeup, Ant-Man managed to deliver a quirky and light hearted adventure in 2015, thanks to Peyton Reed. Reed has returned to the director's seat for Ant-Man and The Wasp, able to have more control over characters like Scott, Hope, Hank, and Luis in the process.
Ant-Man and The Wasp's impressive box office prediction is likely aided by the events of Avengers: Infinity War, which Ant-Man was noticeably absent for. Thanos was able to wipe out half the galaxy with the snap of a finger, so fans are eager to see how Marvel continues the narrative for the two films in between Infinity War and Avengers 4. While Ant-Man and The Wasp has been teased as a capsulated and independent story, its post-credits scenes will reportedly have a direct connection to the MCU proper, and the struggle against Thanos.
It should be interesting to see if The Wrap's new estimations for Ant-Man and The Wasp's end up being accurate, or if the upcoming sequel continues to shatter expectations. It was previously reported to take in $75 million, and estimates are only continuing to grow. But Ant-Man and The Wasp also has the potential to break Marvel's five-film winning streak of $100 million openers. So while $80M is still far more than the original Ant-Man made back in 2015 ($57.2 million), the studio is no doubt hoping that word of mouth and the holiday weekend will help it make even more cash.
Ant-Man and The Wasp will arrive in theaters on July 6, 2018. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.