James Cameron’s Avatar after returning to movie theatres in China, on Friday, grossed $3.5 million, pushing its total haul to a historic $2.7926 billion. The 2009 blockbuster took back the top box office prize with $2.802 billion.
Jon Landau told the Variety that they are proud to reach this great milestone. “But Jim and I are most thrilled that the film is back in theatres during these unprecedented times, and we want to thank our Chinese fans for their support,” he said. “We are hard at work on the next Avatar films and look forward to sharing the continuation of this epic story for years to come.”
Marvel Studios, in a tweet, congratulated James Cameron and his team for reclaiming the box office crown. Variety said Avengers: Endgame had relinquished its title as the highest grossing movie in history to Avatar, the previous record-holder. Prior to the release of Endgame in April 2019, James Cameron’s groundbreaking sci-fi epic held the ultimate box office crown for a decade with $2.7897 billion worldwide. Avengers: Endgame eclipsed that milestone ever so slightly, churning out a casual $2.7902 billion in global ticket sales. But on Friday, Avatar returned to movie theatres in China and grossed $3.5 million.
Analysts explained what took Avatar several re-releases to achieve, Avengers: Endgame was able to accomplish in three months due to the unprecedented demand that may never again be replicated. It was an culmination of 21 movies over the span of 10 years. Variety said it became the must-see film event of the year as the Avengers teamed up to take down the ultimate baddie Thanos. And moviegoers emotionally bid adieu to Robert Downey Jr’s Iron Man. The comic book mashup also starred Chris Evans as Captain America, Brie Larson as Captain Marvel, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Mark Ruffalo as Hulk, and Paul Rudd as Ant-Man.
In China, the re-release of Avatar comes as the country is experiencing unprecedented box office demand while recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic. However, its not the same in North America. Hardly anyone has been going to the movies and ticket sales have been falling flat as Hollywood studios continue to postpone their buzziest releases.