As of this writing Avatar, James Cameron’s tale of a culture clash between human and Na’vi on the fantastical world of Pandora, has made $726,612,776 worldwide in its first twelve days of release according to Box Office Mojo. Domestically the film has grossed $250,419,951, while international audiences have contributed a whopping $476,192,825 to the increasingly impressive box office total. For more admiration on how well Avatar has done so far and speculation on how much higher it could soar, hit the jump.
For all the fretting that was done prior to Avatar‘s release about how it could possibly recoup its budget, the box office is large enough quick enough that 20th Century Fox accountants no longer have cause for concern. Only on Christmas Eve has Avatar earned less than $16 million domestically, and the film’s highest earning day ($28.3 million) came more than a week after its release date, a relative rarity for a non-platform release. Holiday theater spending habits apply to the upcoming New Year’s weekend, so Avatar is poised to continue to sell massive amounts of tickets well into January, if not beyond.
Avatar‘s domestic appeal sure is impressive, but its earning power overseas is breathtaking. One of the most common criticisms of Avatar, that its plot and themes are well-worn territory, may actually prove to be a financial asset; such familiarity transcends the language barrier, leaving audiences who do not speak English free to focus on the main selling point of the film, the dazzling visuals. Avatar has truly struck a chord with viewers abroad, who have supplied nearly two-thirds (65.5%) of the film’s spectacular gross. For comparison, recent box office wunderkind The Dark Knight earned 46.8% of its $1 billion worldwide total via international theaters.
The film is likely to cross $750 million in the next day or two, all but guaranteeing that Avatar will earn more than $1 billion worldwide by the end of its run. If it does so, Avatar would become only the fifth member of the exclusive $1 billion club, joining Titanic, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, and The Dark Knight.
Avatar may not exactly be a second strike of lightning for Cameron; it would be quite the feat to best his previous effort, Titanic, which topped the box office for fifteen straight weeks from December to April on a ride to become the world’s highest grossing movie ever with $1.84 billion. But at the rate its going, Avatar seems destined to be among the top five worldwide earners ever, and may even settle right below Titanic on the list. As Avatar continues to hit new milestones, we’ll keep you updated.