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‘Avengers: Infinity War’ just topped $1 billion in record time. So what’s next?

Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) and Wong (Benedict Wong) watch the box-office records fall before “Avengers: Infinity War.” (Disney/Marvel Studios)

JOE RUSSO, co-director of “Avengers: Infinity War,” sat in a Washington conference room last week and half-joked: If only the film had already opened in China, too.

“Infinity War’s” global box office is already so massive, though, it hasn’t needed China (where the film opens this coming weekend) to set records.

Disney/Marvel’s “Infinity War” passed the $1 billion mark in 11 days — besting the 12 days that it took Disney/Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” to reach that milestone in 2015.

“Infinity War” has grossed $1.16 billion worldwide, according to studio estimates Sunday, as it closes in on its Marvel predecessor “Black Panther” ($1.34 billion) as the biggest movie of the year.

Powered by those two films, Disney has already crossed the $3 billion mark for 2018.

Thirty-four films have now topped $1 billion in Hollywood history (not adjusting for inflation); Disney now accounts for half (17).

“Infinity War” is the sixth Marvel Cinematic Universe movie to gross more than $1 billion. The film’s big challenge now is to beat the top film on that list: The first “Avengers” film grossed $1.52 billion in 2012 (before adjusting for inflation).

Boding well for “Infinity War” over the longer haul is its early take overseas. Joss Whedon’s “The Avengers” saw 59 percent of its total come from foreign markets; “Infinity War” sits at 61.3 percent even before opening in China — where “The Avengers” grossed $86.3 million in 2012.

Domestically, “Infinity War” grossed $112.4 million in its second weekend out — edging “Black Panther’s” second weekend ($111.7 million) but landing well behind record-holder “The Force Awakens” ($149.2 million).

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