Don't let second-week blues get "The Avengers" down -- especially if this movie's second week is more than what most movies would scrounge up their entire run.
The Joss Whedon-directed comic book flick earned an estimated $103.2 million at the box office this weekend -- just its second week in release -- breaking the record previously set by "Avatar" in 2009 with a $75 million second week. And that has some people wondering: When is it too soon to be talking about biggest box office take ... ever?
"Avatar," from "The Terminator" writer and director James Cameron, became the biggest box office topper of all time when it supplanted Cameron's previous movie, "Titanic," with a domestic haul of $760.5 million domestically and another $2 billion internationally.
In just its second week, "Avengers" is more than halfway there, pulling in a total of $373.2 million domestically ... in just 10 days. It is expected to surpass "The Hunger Games" as the top-grossing movie of 2012 by Tuesday at the latest, and could be in for another strong weekend next week despite the release of Sasha Baron Cohen's new film, "The Dictator."
"The Hunger Games," by the way, has made $386.9 million since it was released nearly two months ago.
"Avengers" is pulling in just under $24,000 per screen, according to The Numbers, destroying anything else in its path. In fact, the only film that is even close to those numbers is the independent comedy "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," which is pulling in just under $15,000 per screen -- but is only appearing on 178 screens compared to 4,400 screens for "Avengers."
There was no competition for "Avengers." No. 2 at the box office was the new Tim Burton/Johnny Depp comedy "Dark Shadows," based loosely on the 1960s soap opera, which had a respectable haul of $28.8 million on its opening weekend. It was the only new major-release film that opened in theaters over the weekend.
The Sony comedy "Think Like a Man" fell to third place with $6.3 million, while "Hunger Games" moved up to fourth with $4.4 million.
"Avengers" also beat the 10-day record set by "The Dark Knight," which previously stood at $313.8 million. However, while it might top "Dark Knight" in total box office, it likely won't climb above "Titanic" and "Avatar." Gitesh Pandya with Box Office Guru predicts "Avengers" will likely top out at no more than $600 million domestically. That will be about $60 million short of beating "Titanic," and a good distance from beating "Avatar."
But still ... No. 3 of all time doesn't sound bad for a film that is already in the top 20 of all time after just its second week.
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