Joss Whedon’s The Avengers is a real contender to be the first film this year to go from nought to a billion. Here in the UK, we’ll be seeing it on 27th April, a week before its US release on 4th May. Whilst it is a contender, as much as I think the film will be amazing and do very, very well at the box office, I’m a little hesitant about whether or not I think it will be joining the club.
In recent years from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Iron Man 2 has done the best, followed by Iron Man, each taking $620m. and $585m., respectively. On the other hand, Thor and Captain America didn’t do quite as well (though still very well) last year, taking just under $450m. and $370m.
However, taking into consideration the fact that The Avengers is looking incredible (you can catch up on all our coverage here), that Robert Downey, Jr. is in it (I think his performance has a lot to do with why Iron Man has done so well), that it has more superheroes than you can throw a shoe at, and that everyone is talking about how good it looks, I’d say there’s a strong possibility that this will be the first in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to break that billion-dollar boundary.
Men in Black III, due out on 25th May, stands at least an outside chance, and should be noted as having the potential to do it. The first and second films reached slightly over and under the $500m. mark, but I think that the decade’s gap since the last film could play in its favour. It isn’t a franchise that churns out sequels year after year, and I think the advance in special effects will make it even more visually impressive than its predecessors.
Beyond the UK and US, the film is being released in at least 30 different countries, which should also play in its favour at the international box office. Having said that, however, I think that nonetheless it might fall shy of $1bn. I hope to be proven wrong before long, of course, but we’ll have to wait and see.