Marvel Studios’ Black Panther opened this past weekend with a record-breaking $201 million. The film broke the record for highest opening weekend in February. With the $201 million opening, Black Panther had the fifth highest opening weekend of all time; Star Wars: The Force Awakens is the current record holder with a $247 million opening.
Black Panther exceeded expectations both critically and financially. The first projections for the film were at $125 million, but continued to jump after the positive word of mouth coming after the world premiere.
Black Panther has become one of the most critically acclaimed comic book films of all time. The film recorded a 97% on Rotten Tomatoes, making it the highest rated comic book film on the site. Black Panther also received an A+ CinemaScore from audiences, making it the first Marvel film to receive the grade since The Avengers.
Black Panther follows other comic book films like last year’s Wonder Woman, making a cultural impact and being a box office success. Black Panther features a predominantly black cast with Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Winston Duke, Angela Bassett, and Forest Whitaker.
The all-star cast was directed by Ryan Coogler, whose previous credits include Creed and Fruitvale Station. Marvel Studios’ President and Producer Kevin Feige has already stated they would love for Coogler to come back for the sequel to be announced later.
Feige has even gone so far to say it is Marvel Studios’ best film to date in an interview with ABC Nightline, “The movie finished, and I looked over at Ryan and said, ‘That’s the best movie we’ve ever made.’”
The character of Black Panther and others featured in the film will appear in the upcoming May release, Avengers: Infinity War.