We all knew this day was coming. After five weeks of leading the top five, BLACK PANTHER will now take home second place honors in its sixth frame with some estimated $16.6 million against PACIFIC RIM: UPRISING‘s middling $28 million domestic take, which puts it at the top of the box office. And though $28 million doesn’t seem like much for a film that was produced for $150 million, the disposable sequel to PACIFIC RIM racked up some $120 million overseas this weekend. If READY PLAYER ONE doesn’t eat up all of its audience next weekend, it could actually turn a profit by the end of its run and secure reason enough to explore a third film in the franchise.
Despite these meager triumphs for PACIFIC RIM: UPRISING, BLACK PANTHER still essentially won this weekend for a different reason. Current estimates suggest that the Marvel hit will have brought in a little under $631 million by the end of today, meaning that BLACK PANTHER is now the highest grossing comic-book movie ever made after toppling THE AVENGERS‘ $623 million take. And mind you, that $623 was what the movie made at the time it had completely exited theaters. BLACK PANTHER has only vacated the number one spot as of right now and will likely have a few weeks and perhaps even months bringing in small batches of millions. Even as AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR looms, BLACK PANTHER is giving the upcoming Marvel epic quite the number to beat. By the time it leaves the top five, Ryan Coogler‘s vibrant, moving blockbuster will have beaten JURASSIC WORLD to become the fourth highest grossing domestic film of all time and might even overtake FROZEN and 2017’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST to enter the top ten highest grossing movies worldwide.
In comparison, the rest of the top five was largely ignorable. I CAN ONLY IMAGINE, which was made for some $7 million, is currently holding steady in third with a somewhat admirable $13.8 million, bringing its cumulative total to $38.3 million. The only other major wide release of the week, SHERLOCK GNOMES, came in at fourth with $10.6 million, just barely beating out TOMB RAIDER in its second frame with $10.4 million. Expect both of them to get the boot next weekend when READY PLAYER ONE, ACRIMONY, and the latest GOD’S NOT DEAD movie arrive, but don’t expect BLACK PANTHER to go anywhere for awhile.
Here’s the top five at the box office for the weekend:
1. ‘Pacific Rim: Uprising’ $28M
2. ’Black Panther’ $16M
3. ‘I Can Only Imagine’ $13.83M
4. ‘Sherlock Gnomes’ $10.6M
5. ‘Tomb Raider’ $10.43M