At the end of its first week at the domestic box office, Avatar: The Way of Water is still trailing Top Gun: Maverick.
The movie, which debuted in theatres on December 16, is the eagerly anticipated follow-up to the box office sensation Avatar from 2009, which is still among the all-time top-grossing movies.
Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldaa, Sigourney Weaver, and Stephen Lang are just a few of the cast members who have returned for James Cameron to helm The Way of Water. However, not every actor is reprising their roles from the first movie.
Deadline reports that Avatar: The Way of Water's domestic box office increased by $14.5 million yesterday, increasing its cumulative total to $197.5 million. This means that today, on day 8, it will surpass the $200 million milestone.
The movie is being compared to other high-grossing but not record-breaking movies that took 8 days to cross that threshold, such as Captain Marvel from 2019 and Jurassic World Dominion.
In terms of American box office performance during its first week in theatres, Top Gun: Maverick, this year's hit legacy sequel, did 4% better than it.
On the scale dictated by the legacy of the first movie, Avatar: The Way of Water's first week has only been underwhelming.
The movie, however, will need to accrue quite a few more weeks like this in order to break even because of its astronomical price tag (which has been projected to be somewhere between $350 and $450 million before taking publicity and advertising costs into account).
Cameron himself has acknowledged that in order for it to be profitable, it will need to become one of the most successful movies of all time, which might call for a $2 billion worldwide total.
Even if this first week was a little moist, that doesn't necessarily imply it won't succeed in that endeavour. Since Avatar: The Way of Water has a longer running time than three hours, fewer screenings per day can be held than with shorter movies.