When The Avengers starring Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man), Chris Evans (Captain America), Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Mark Ruffalo (Hulk), Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye) and Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow) begins its domestic box office run tomorrow at midnight, the theater count will max out at 4,349 by early Friday with 3,364 of those supporting 3D and the ticket surcharges that go with it. Calculate in IMAX showings and The Avengers is poised to open huge in the U.S. and Canada. Hulk huge.
Conservative estimates are pegging The Avengers to complete its first three days in North America to finish somewhere between $150 and $160 million. That would put it in second place behind Warner's Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 with $169.1 million and right around the $158.4 million Warner's The Dark Knight put up in 2008.
The Avengers already feels bigger than those two firms. Positive word of mouth from early screenings to fans and overseas territories has all demographics excited to check it out. The core comic book fan demo could possibly be seeing it two, three or even four times in the first few days of release.
I don't think I'm going out on a limb by predicting The Avengers will top Potter and secure the highest opening weekend record. In fact I'm fairly confident that as theaters continue to add early morning screenings to meet demand, The Avengers will surpass the $200 million plateau. In only three days. After all, The Hunger Games topped $150 million just this past March after late estimates just before its release were calling for $120 million.
The first domestic box office numbers from The Avengers will come in early Friday morning from the midnight screenings. Those will give us a good idea of how high The Avengers might soar.
The Avengers also opens in China and Russia this weekend. If the film can break $200 million here and between those countries add another $150 million plus, we could be talking about worldwide grosses north of $600 million by Monday. If that becomes the case, The Avengers has a legitimate shot at making a run for the exclusive billion dollar club.