Ant-Man and the Wasp is off to a swell start at the box office, but of course you knew that already. Few things are as predictable as a Marvel Studios movie’s success at the moment, and indeed Ant-Man and the Wasp appears to be on track to perform at or above expectations. The Peyton Reed-directed sequel pulled in $11.5 million from Thursday preview showings, which is nearly double the $6.4 million that Ant-Man earned on Thursday in 2015. The follow-up is eyeing an opening weekend in the range of $75 million to $85 million, which is a far cry from Avengers: Infinity War’s opening weekend but right in the pocket of what Marvel and Disney hoped for with this admittedly self-contained and smaller scale superhero pic.
The Thursday night preview numbers are ahead of Doctor Strange ($9.4 million) and Wonder Woman ($11 million), but Thursday box office is an unreliable indicator of final opening weekend numbers owing to a number of different factors. That said, Ant-Man and the Wasp should handily win the weekend where the only other new release is The First Purge.
Ant-Man and the Wasp is a curious kind of film for Marvel Studios. It’s a sequel, but it’s not exactly on the same level as Captain America: The Winter Soldier or Thor: The Dark World, which opened to $95 million and $85 million respectively. Ant-Man is framed as a much lighter and more flighty franchise, which actually could work in its favor given the bummer ending of Infinity War and the overall downer public mood at the moment. It’ll likely fall short of the opening weekend box office of Phase Three sequels Captain America: Civil War ($179 million), Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 ($146 million), and Thor: Ragnarok ($122 million), but again Ant-Man and the Wasp is aiming for a slightly different audience, with a different kind of bar to clear.
This will be the last new Marvel movie in some time, as Captain Marvel doesn’t open until March 2019 and fans continue to wait with bated breath to find out anything about Avengers 4, which hits theaters in May 2019. So consider Ant-Man and the Wasp the cool chaser to the stinging shot of Infinity War. Here’s hoping it’s good enough to linger for quite some time.
For more on MCU box office, click here. And for more on Ant-Man and the Wasp, peruse links to our recent articles below:
- ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’: What Does It Mean for ‘Avengers 4’?
- What the ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Post-Credit Scene Means for the MCU
- ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Review: Carving Out a Small Corner in the MCU
- Evangeline Lilly on What It Means to Be the First Female Marvel Lead in the Title