Marvel Studios has reached yet another box office milestone. The studio has earned over $5.02 billion in global receipts in 2019, with just three films. Marvel topped its previous studio-best weeks ago, but there’s an even more impressive record the company has set for itself.
Marvel Studios’ 2019 releases have averaged $1.673B per film. That’s a new record for the studio, surpassing its 2012 average of $1.519B per film in 2012. That record stood for so long because Marvel only released a single film, The Avengers, in 2012 and there was no smaller solo film to bring down the average.
Avengers: Endgame ($2.795B) becoming the highest-grossing film of all time went a long way in powering Marvel’s performance this year, but it wasn’t alone. Captain Marvel ($1.128B) and Spider-Man: Far From Home ($1.097B and counting) each did their part. This is the first time Marvel Studios has produced three billion-dollar hits in the same calendar year.
It is worth noting that unlike 2018, Disney will not be keeping all of the money from Marvel Studios’ record haul this year. Remember that Sony Pictures is the distributor of Far From Home and will be keeping that film’s box office gross.
Spider-Man: Far From Home still counts toward Marvel’s annual and lifetime totals, however, as it is a Marvel Studios production. It is no different than the Paramount and Universal-distributed films from Phase One counting toward the global box office total for the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise. Disney purchased Marvel in 2009 and did not distribute any MCU films until The Avengers.
To date, the 23 films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe have earned an astounding $22.55B worldwide. That is the most of any franchise in history and it’s not even close. Perhaps even more impressive than the total is the $980.4M average per movie.
Disney has distributed 16 Marvel Studios movies, totaling nearly $18.281B in global receipts. That’s a ridiculous average of $1.143B per film. Between Sony (Far From Home) and Disney (everything else), five of Marvel Studios’ last six productions have each topped $1B.
This is the third consecutive year in which Marvel has reached a new studio-best at the worldwide box office. Marvel took advantage of releasing three films in a single year for the first time in 2017, earning $2.598B to break its 2015 mark of $1.925B. Marvel Studios shattered that 2017 record in 2018 with $4.018B.
That streak will not continue next year, as Black Widow and The Eternals can hardly be expected to combine for $5B. Those films will be successful in their own right, of course, but the story right now is Marvel Studios’ historic 2019, which was built on the foundation of over a decade of excellence.
That foundation is not comprised of dollars and cents. It is made of unparalleled consistency in high-quality storytelling that has connected with critics and audiences. There have been more than enough opportunities for the audience to grow tired of this franchise, but they have not because people don’t get tired of great stories.
As always, the best part of Marvel Studios’ unprecedented success is that it has been well-earned.