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When it came out, Marvel’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was the most popular movie in the United States. It made $180 million over the weekend, a big help for theaters that were having trouble.
The sequel broke the record for the most money made by a movie in North America in November. It broke “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’s” 2013 record of $158 million. The superhero adventure also made an impressive $330 million worldwide, with $150 million coming from 55 markets outside the United States.
But there is a bittersweet side to how well it has done. The people who made the sequel had to deal with a shocking tragedy before they could start filming. When Chadwick Boseman died in 2020, he gave “Black Panther” a lot of its heart. He had just turned 43.
In response, the film’s director and co-writer, Ryan Coogler, changed “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” into a tribute. In the movie, King T’Challa has died, and the kingdom of Wakanda is trying to deal with it. This shows how art can be like real life, which makes the movie more emotional.
Challenges while making “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”
There were also several other problems while making “Black Panther.” While COVID was going on, they made the $250 million movie. One of its stars, Letitia Wright, got hurt, which stopped filming. But that is nothing compared to how much the theater world has changed since then.
When “Black Panther” came out four years ago, China and Russia were still big movie markets. But it’s getting harder for Hollywood movies to get into China, and studio movies can’t be shown there anymore since Russia invaded Ukraine. So, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” will be a huge hit worldwide, but it probably won’t make as much money as its predecessor, which made $1.4 billion.
Currently, “Wakanda Forever” is the second biggest domestic debut of the year. In its first week, “Doctor Strange: The Multiverse of Madness” made $187.4 million. It also has the third-best opening from the Pandemic era, after the Doctor Strange movie mentioned above and the $260 million “Spider-Man: No Way Home.”
Other movies in the running
Most movie studios didn’t want to make “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.” But “The Fabelmans,” a semi-autobiographical film by Steven Spielberg, only got a limited release. The movie opened in four theaters in New York City and Los Angeles and made an average of $160,000, or about $40,000 per screen. So the real test will be when it goes wide on November 23.
The Warner Bros. and DC movie “Black Adam,” which is based on a comic book, came in second at the domestic box office. It made $8.6 million, bringing the total amount made in the United States to $151.1 million.
“Ticket to Paradise,” a romantic comedy starring Julia Roberts and George Clooney, came in third place with $6.1 million. It has now made $56.5 million in the United States. “Lyle, Lyle Crocodile” by Sony came in fourth with $3.2 million. It has made $40.8 million since it opened a month ago.
Paramount’s low-budget horror hit “Smile,” is in fifth place. The producers spent $17 million on the movie, half of a “Fabelman.” Nevertheless, it has made a considerable amount of money in the United States: $102.8 million. With that kind of result, the studio should be beaming with pride.
Theater owners have been begging for good news for a long time. Unfortunately, only a few tickets have been sold since the summer. Cineworld, the second-largest theater chain, has filed for bankruptcy, and other theaters are also considering closing. At this sad time, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” couldn’t come soon enough.