Box Office: “Avatar: The Way of Water” heave an opening day of $53 million

After years of development and production, James Cameron’s “Avatar” sequel to Judgment Day has arrived.

Disney and 20th Century Studios’ The Way of Water hovered at the box office with $53 million from 4,202 opening-day locations, a figure that includes $17 million in Thursday previews. It ranks as the sixth-highest first-day domestic gross of the year, below those by “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” ($90.7 million), “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” ($84.2 million), and “Thor: Love and Thunder ($69.5M), ‘Jurassic World Dominion’ ($59.5M), and ‘Batman’ ($56.6M). It’s also well above the opening day $26.7M the first landed.” Avatar” in 2009, though the sequel arrives with feature previews Thursday and years of anticipation.

All eyes are on “The Way of Water,” which hopes to generate a bumper box office; It’s not every weekend that theaters receive a sequel to the highest-grossing movie of all time. When the first Avatar movie raked in a $77 million domestic opening in 2009, many reports were blown away by the initial performance, pointing to the film’s largely legendary production process and Cameron’s box office success with 1997’s Titanic, then the highest-grossing film. movie ever. But with stellar-formatted sub-ships and massive commentary months later, “Avatar” stayed strong, finally dethroning “Titanic” for the all-time record.

With little competition throughout the holidays, “The Way of Water” hopes to find similar success. The film has received strong raves from some critics without being unanimously praised, and currently holds a 73% approval rating from top critics on review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes. General audiences seem to be more positive; The film received an “A” grade by research firm Cinema Score, indicating strong approval among first round ticket buyers.

It’s not just about whether Cameron’s latest movie can fully justify his massive $350 million production budget (not to mention the financial success of his previous films). Water Road comes at a time when exhibitors are hungry for an event to drum up business over the holidays. This year’s total box office receipts likely finished off a worrisome fraction of the pre-pandemic levels seen in 2019. And after an auspicious summer season featuring a variety of blockbuster hits, foot traffic waned during the fall season, with little else other than “Black Panther”. : Wakanda Forever” really pulls the crowd.

On the subject, the superhero film is now the second-highest-grossing film of the year at the domestic box office, surpassing the $411 million total of fellow Marvel film “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.” “Wakanda Forever” should take a distant second on the domestic charts this weekend, with its North American total expected to be $418 million.

Universal’s action movie “Violent Night” could compete with “Black Panther 2” for the silver medal. The film also shows nearly $5 million for the weekend, down 42% from its predecessor. The gross domestic product is now $30 million for “A violent night”.

It looks like Disney’s “Stranger World” will take fourth place. After earning about $510,000 on Friday, domestic ticket sales are now at nearly $30 million. It’s still a disastrous performance for the animated adventure, which carries a production budget of $180 million.

Rounding out the top five will be “The Menu” from Searchlight Pictures, projected to gross $1.5 million in its fifth weekend of release. With over $30 million in domestic ticket sales, the culinary comedy has been one of the few niche titles to find a significant audience in recent months.

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