It seems like only yesterday that we were reviewing the records for midnight openings (actually, it was March 23, when The Hunger Games opened with a 7th-highest $19.7M Thursday midnight–the highest ever for a non-sequel). Now we’re just a few hours away from the US arrival of THE AVENGERS, which… is it a sequel? Let’s say it is, since 4 of the main characters (Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and The Hulk) have all starred in their own previous movies.
The bar is therefore set by Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, which hit an amazing $43.5M in just its midnight showings. Below that are 3 Twilight movies: Breaking Dawn Part 1 ($30.3M), Eclipse ($30.1M) and New Moon ($26.3M). Those are followed by 2 more Potters: Deathly Hallows Part 1 ($24M) and Half-Blood Prince ($22.2M).
Oddly, Marvel movies haven’t been all that impressive in midnight bows: Iron Man 2 made only $7.5M in 2010 (that was double what the first Iron Man had done in midnight screenings), Thor grossed only $3.25M, and Captain America was at about $4M. That seems likely to change in a big way tonight, though, as THE AVENGERS is expected to tear through multiplexes this weekend much as its Hulk would. (The movie is already over $280M overseas after just a week of release, with China, Russia and Japan still to come.)
Stay with SHOWBUZZDAILY for an AVENGERS review late night tonight, and all weekend for updated AVENGER boxoffice and analysis!