November 7, 2016


'Doctor Strange' at the Box Office: How Does It Compare to Other Marvel Movies?

Marvel Studios
Marvel Studios

Marvel's Doctor Strange, a fresh-flavored film starring a character new to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, pulled $84.9 million on its opening weekend. That's Marvel Studios' 10th-biggest opener, just behind Thor: The Dark World's $85.7 million in November 2016 (the only other movie Marvel has premiered in November) and well ahead of the original Thor's $65.7 million in 2011. Forbes writes that the 14th MCU movie is also the 14th consecutive box office–leading debut, plus the 14th consecutive $50 million+ opener.

Doctor Strange takes a more impressive rank in terms of films introducing new lead superheroes. Consider:

1. Iron Man (May 2, 2008): $98.6 million
2. Doctor Strange (Nov. 4, 2016): $85 million
3. Thor (May 6, 2011): $66 million
4. Captain America: The First Avenger (July 22, 2011): $65 million
5. Ant-Man (July 17, 2015): $57.2 million
6. The Incredible Hulk (June 13, 2008): $55.4 million

Guardians of the Galaxy, a 2014 franchise introduction featuring a variety of heroes, cooked up $94.3 on its opening weekend.

Box Office Mojo predicts a $205 million domestic haul for Doctor Strange in the end. Counting its two weeks playing overseas, the Benedict Cumberbatch–starring flick's global take so far is $325.4 million. Its Chinese opener ($44.3 million) is Marvel's third-highest ever, behind only Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War. 

Marvel's biggest movies ever remain its two Avengers flicks. The original opening in May 2012 to the tune of $207.4 million and grossed $1.52 billion worldwide; Age of Ultron opened at $191.3 million in May 2015 and landed at $1.4 billion total.

Also noteworthy: Walt Disney Studios, Marvel's parent company, just passed the $6 billion annual box office mark for the first time in history. 2017 will be its first time dropping three MCU movies, with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Thor: Ragnarok.

Next, watch an interview with Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Axel Alonso: