‘Thor: Love and Thunder’ Box Office Heads for $135M-$145M...

‘Thor: Love and Thunder’ Box Office Heads for $135M-$145M Opening

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The hammer is back in action.

Marvel’s latest superhero offering, Thor: Love and Thunder, started off its North American box office run with a Friday haul of $69.5 million, including a mighty $29.6 million in Thursday previews.

Most pundits believe Thor 4 will earn $140 million to $145 million for the weekend. Disney is being more cautious and saying $135 million to $145 million. Either way, that is ahead of the $122 million opening of Thor: Ragnarok.

The movie is also making a major push overseas, where it began rolling out midweek and earned $48.6 million through Friday from its first 42 markets.

The Disney and Marvel movie is a direct sequel to Thor: Ragnarok — both were directed by the maverick filmmaker Taika Waititi — and is the fourth entry in the Thor standalone franchise. It’s also the 29th entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe empire of titles.

The movie reunites Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman, while franchise newcomers include Christian Bale. The cast also includes Tessa Thompson, Jaimie Alexander, Waititi and Russell Crowe.

The superhero pic should score the third- or second-best opening of the pandemic era with $150 million or more domestically, and possibly north of $300 million globally. Last December, Spider-Man: No Way Home grossed $50 million in previews for a domestic start of $260 million (in recent days, the Sony and Marvel pic crossed $1.9 billion globally). And earlier this year, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness started off with $36 million in previews on its way to a domestic launch of $187.4 million.

Thor: Love and Thunder is expected to contribute to the summer box office boom.

Through July 4, 2022, domestic revenue clocked in at an estimated $3.9 billion, according to Comscore. That’s up nearly 250 percent from 2021, but down 32 percent from 2019. Summer revenue through July Fourth was $1.96 billion, up nearly 200 percent from the same period in 2021 and down only 15 percent from 2019.

The marquee is the most crowded it has been since COVID-19 struck. Minions: The Rise of Gru heads into its second weekend, while Top Gun: Maverick continues to fly high.

Among other titles fueling the rally is Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, released in early May, which has crossed $950 million worldwide, while June’s Jurassic World Dominion stomped past $800 million globally over the Fourth of July holiday weekend.

July 8, 9 a.m. Updated with revised numbers.

This story was originally published on July 8, 2022, at 8:34 a.m.

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