Black Panther has reached a new milestone by being the latest movie to gross more than a billion dollars at the worldwide box office. Marvel’s latest superhero movie crossed this coveted threshold in less than a month’s time, having been released on February 16.
The movie is only the 33rd film to earn more than $1 billion, but it is the 16th Disney movie and the fifth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to do so. Marvel’s other entries into the billion-dollar-club include The Avengers, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Iron Man 3, and Captain America: Civil War.
In terms of domestic numbers, Black Panther has earned more than $521 million and is expected to earn $40 million this weekend, which would put it ahead of The Dark Knight, which grossed $535 million stateside.
However, as successful as Black Panther has been in the United States, a lot of the film’s success is owed to its strong showing in China, where it earned $20 million on its first day. The film’s opening weekend has not yet concluded, but it is projected to earn as much as $60 million during this time.
Most of Marvel’s movies do good at the box office, but Black Panther is unique because it helps highlight the fact that Hollywood can make big-budget superhero/action movies with a mostly black cast and make a profit. In the same way that Wonder Woman helped dispel Hollywood’s fear of casting women as leading roles in superhero movies, Black Panther may lead to Hollywood taking more chances with the properties it chooses to adapt.
In addition to resonating well with moviegoers, Black Panther has proven to be a hit with critics. Some of those reviews, including our own, have praised Black Panther for being more than a good superhero movie. It is that, but Marvel has plenty of those under its belt. Black Panther raises the bar on what the MCU should be, and it will be interesting to see if Avengers: Infinity War and other upcoming Marvel movies live up to that.
Critical praise aside, Black Panther remains one of Marvel’s most successful movies and it will likely only grow more successful with time.