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As expected, The Avengers ruled the weekend at the box office, which was the only natural result for the most-anticipated film of the summer. What wasn’t expected, however, is that this movie would break the record for the all-time domestic opening weekend of all time with an estimated $200.3 three-day take. Considering that the movie’s worldwide total has now reached $641.8 million, the movie’s $220 million budget (plus all of its advertising expenses) has already easily been recouped. Part of this massive success has been due to word-of-mouth by those who saw advanced previews, for director Joss Whedon honed in on his own inner fanboy to make the film that comic junkies truly wanted to see. Whedon knows the hell out of these characters and used all of their respectives strengths, weaknesses, and neuroses to the greatest advantage. It also comes as no surprise that putting so many superheroes into one movie would best the individual efforts of Thor’s abs and Captain America’s waxed nips (plus those of Iron Man, The Hulk, Loki, Black Widow, Hawkeye, and Nick Fury). In this instance, the sum is greater than the whole of the parts because Avengers has not only smashed sales records but also achieved quality:
It’s been clear for a while that The Avengers would be a box office success, though few people could have foreseen this opening. The superhero team-up got off to an unprecedented $200.3 million start this weekend, which obliterates the previous all-time weekend record set by Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 last Summer ($169.2 million).
While it fell short of setting a new opening day record (that still belongs to Potter), The Avengers was responsible for new high marks in most other major categories. It was the fastest movie ever to reach $100 million, $150 million, and $200 million, and it set new records for Saturday ($69.7 million) and Sunday ($50.1 million) grosses. It also had the highest per-theater average ever for a nationwide release with $46,057.
Through its first three days, The Avengers has already grossed more than Thor ($181 million), Captain America: The First Avenger ($176.6 million) and The Incredible Hulk ($134.8 million). It’s still behind Iron Man and Iron Man 2 ($318.4 million and $312.4 million, respectively), though it should pass those movies next weekend.
The incredible opening weekend gross for The Avengers is mostly the result of a lengthy, extremely effective marketing effort which began all the way back in 2008 when Nick Fury made his first appearance after the credits in the original Iron Man. By the time Thor and Captain America opened last year, it became clear that these movies existed in equal parts to make money and to serve as advertisements for The Avengers.
The movie went on to receive strong reviews (94 percent fresh on Rotten Tomatoes), which made anticipation reach even higher levels. It also helped that April’s releases were anemic, so The Avengers was able to play on more screens than it would have if another major movie was in the market (like when Thor had to face Fast Five last year).
The big question now is how high The Avengers can go–it will obviously hit $400 million, and with exceptional word-of-mouth (rare “A+” CinemaScore) the movie could even be in line for a $500 million total.
[From Box Office Mojo]
SOME SPOILERS AHEAD!
Even though I tried to avoid seeing this movie until next weekend weekend, I ended up braving the crowds and catching a Sunday matinee showing that was (inevitably) filled with a vast geek squad who were probably already on their 2nd or 3rd viewings of the movie. Overall though, The Avengers was a really great time. The dialogue was snappy (both in regard to one-liners and monologues), the plot was well thought out and contained no visible holes, and the special effects weren’t cheesy or overdone. While I wasn’t blown away by the action and didn’t enjoy the infighting (particularly the encounter between Iron Man and Thor over Loki) nearly as much as I expected to, the smart script made up for these slight shortcomings.
Now let’s talk about how well the abundant eye candy fared because, ultimately, this is a summer blockbuster and, action aside, the movie was intentionally filled to the brim with a large number of attractive, strapping actors. Between Chris Hemsworth and Chris Evans, I was personally well sated, and Robert Downey Jr. pulled off his usual charming a-hole in Tony Stark quite well. If one adds in Jeremy Renner’s effortless tough-guy aura as Hawkeye and the mesmerizing performance of Tom Hiddleston as Loki, then it comes as no surprise to learn that this movie pulled in an impressive 40% female audience, which is pretty amazing for a superhero movie. Even more boastworthy is that Scarlett Johansson’s contributions went well past her famous jiggle. Don’t get me wrong though, for those boobs jiggled plenty, but Scarlett also held her own (far better than she did in Iron Man 2) and didn’t embarrass herself at all.
Character development, which is a rare entity to behold in the blockbuster world, was also a major strength of The Avengers. Thor and Iron Man both had to do away with their own respective bits of snobbery (fighting alongside mortals and getting along with others, respectively) for the united cause, and the Hulk also learned to cope with his (for lack of a better descriptor) dual personality. Oddly enough, I think that last aspect was the most thrilling part of the movie for me even though I went in thinking that this incarnation of the Hulk was “fluffier” than usual and nearly as brawny as he’s previously been. I now stand corrected, for both Ruffalo and the CGI department won me over — not enough to throw away my allegance to Thor, but close. Indeed, I enjoyed this movie like I love The Dirty Dozen, and Whedon did an amazing job of integrating a bunch of mismatched parts into one impressive superhero tapestry.
Photos courtesy of AllMoviePhoto
Tom Hiddleston had a breakout year in 2011 thanks to roles in Thor, War Horse, and Midnight in Paris, and he takes on a slew of superheroes as The Avengers' resident bad boy. When I recently chatted with Hiddleston, he talked about why Thor's brother Loki is so evil, and how a hug could probably go a long way for him. I also got his response to being voted the hottest guy in The Avengers and having hoards of fans in his corner. His reaction is priceless, so check it out!
Promotion for The Avengers is the gift that keeps on giving. It’s not that any of the stars are saying anything ground-breaking or noteworthy – it’s just that I’m enjoying the photos so, so much. Last night was the big London premiere of The Avengers, and just like in Moscow, most of the dudes were present and accounted for. I have to wonder – why does Jeremy Renner get so little love from photographers?
Since this is such an overwhelming sausage party, I’m just going to talk about these dudes all at once instead of trying to break them down. All of the guys looked fine in their suits, and I’m still trying to figure out if I prefer Robert Downey Jr. or Mark Ruffalo. It’s the Sophie’s Choice of dong, I swear. Meanwhile, Tom Hiddleston is completely beloved by the English photographers – he was one of the most photographed men there. And Sam Claflin was there too…he’s not in the movie, though. Guess he just wanted to see it.
Chris Hemsworth still isn’t doing it for me. I’ll just hand him off to Bedhead – she seems to enjoy him. I do like that Chris posed so consistently with his preggo wife, Elsa Pataky. They seem cute together. Tom Hiddleston even got into the action, posing for photos with his ear to Elsa’s bump!
The cast of The Avengers were in Moscow two days ago, and we just got these photos today. They did a photo call and a premiere – and I think a Q&A session too. I’m trying to figure out who’s missing in these photos – Sam Jackson and Chris Evans, and that’s it, right? The rest of them are all there. I don’t know who organized these photos, but the only ones of Jeremy Renner are in group shots, yet the photographer made sure to get lots of pics of Scarlett Johansson’s bust and limp hair. Since I don’t have the time or the inclination to go through these shot by shot (it’s not a fashion post!), and because so many are group shots, let’s just talk about the dongfest that is The Avengers.
I’ve been hearing so much about Tom Hiddleston lately. Lainey even insinuated that Hiddleston is somehow BETTER than Michael Fassbender, which… I mean, everyone is entitled to their opinion. The only thing I’ve seen Hiddleston in was Midnight In Paris, where he played F. Scott Fitzgerald. I liked him just fine – he was a lovely F. Scott. He’s attractive in photos, and I am willing to believe that he’s probably pretty hot in person too. But for the love of God – Michael Fassbender is a completely different BEAST.
How adorable is Mark Ruffalo, though? He and Robert Downey Jr. seem to be having some kind of adorable playoff, RDJ with his cute plaid suit and bow tie, Mark with his general “I’m a sweet dude, trust” vibe. Who would I rather? I don’t even know. I loved Mark’s sex scenes in The Kids Are Alright. But I also loved RDJ’s sex scenes in Two Girls and A Guy. DAMN! This is a hard choice.
I don’t even feel like talking about Chris Hemsworth. He’s still too pretty for my taste. Plus, I just don’t like ponytails on a dude. As for ScarJo… well, The Jiggle is present and accounted for. Bless her. She’s a lucky bitch for getting to hang out with all of these guys.
Last night's 2012 Empire Awards in London brought out a range of good-looking, foreign men. Michael Fassbender picked up the best hero statue, and posed for photos solo afterward. It was a guys-only night for the actor - Michel was without girlfriend Nicole Beharie, who was his costar in Shame. Micheal's X-Men costar James McAvoy was also without the leading lady in his life, wife Anne-Marie Duff. James stopped to smile for a picture, though, with Downton Abbey's Joanne Froggatt. Other honorees included best actor Gary Oldman for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, best male newcomer Tom Hiddleston, and best sci-fi/fantasy Thor. The latter film's star Chris Hemsworth was on hand for the show, as was his costar Olivia Wilde. Chace Crawford suited up to join in on the fun, as well.