Marvel’s “Black Panther” continues to elevate its box-office expectations when it officially opens Friday, from early predictions of $120 million for the four-day holiday weekend to newer studio estimates of $150 million. Now, tracking estimates are putting the film’s domestic debut at somewhere between $165 million and $170 million, according to the Hollywood Reporter and Variety.
That means that the Black Panther has a fellow Marvel character in his cinematic sights.
Fox’s “Deadpool” holds the Presidents’ Day weekend record with a $152.2 million domestic debut two years ago (not adjusting for inflation). “Deadpool” also tallied $132.4 million over its opening three-day weekend — a February record, as well.
“Deadpool” ultimately grossed $363 million in North America and more than three-quarters of a billion worldwide.
“There are no borders on this,” Imax Entertainment chief executive Greg Foster told Variety of “Black Panther’s” broad-reach tracking in the United States. “The momentum is continuing on both coasts and in the middle; in red states and in blue states. In giant cities and smaller suburbs.”
“Black Panther,” which lands precisely a decade after “Iron Man” effectively launched the Marvel Cinematic Universe, stars Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, the Avenger who’s the royal leader of the fictional African nation of Wakanda, as created in 1966 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.