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6 Reasons "Ant-Man" is Marvel's Biggest Opening Ever

Ant-Man (2015) - Scott Lang (Paul Rudd)
Ant-Man is a film about a little superhero but it's a huge win for Marvel. As of yesterday, Ant-Man has grossed $58 million in North America and $56.4 million in other territories, for a total of $114.4 million world-wide. That's good for a movie, but small for a Marvel film. But while Ant-Man didn't set any box office records it's been a huge win for Marvel and all the gambles paid off. Here's why.

1) It's a Big Opening for an "Obscure" Character
They've done movies about little-known characters to the general public like Iron Man. But executives at Disney, Marvel’s parent company, called Ant-Man “an obscure character.” That means the marketing team didn't just have to sell the public on seeing Ant-Man in a movie. They had to sell the superhero too. Of course, Hank Pym and Ant-Man have been featured in various animated movies recently, but Scott Lang isn't a household name. Some better known characters had similar openings in their first solo film. Captain America: The First Avenger opened to $65.05M and Thor opened to $65.7M. Both movies launched successful franchises. It's the biggest opening for an obscure superhero, which opens the door for other "obscure" heroes like Doctor Strange and Captain Marvel.

2) Ant-Man Never Showed Up At Comic-Con
For the last few years Marvel has had a big presence at San Diego Comic Con. In fact, it was back in 2012 that they showcased test footage of Edgar Wright's Ant-Man and it knocked audiences out. Disney and Marvel have made big pushes for their films at SDCC and its part of the success of Guardians of the Galaxy. But they decided to skip Comic Con this year which meant there was no boost of awareness for Ant-Man. It could have doomed the film to failure, but the movie still had a big opening weekend.

3) It Proves Smaller Budgets Work
Ant-Man cost a measly $150 million to make, so it doesn't have to make $2 billion to win the box office. The Avengers cost over $220 million to make, so this film is a bargain for Marvel. It proves not every Marvel film needs more than the GDP of the Unites States to turn a profit.

4) It's a Huge Family Film for Marvel
A lot of Marvel movies are mocked for being light, but they've gotten darker. Movies like Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier have taken the movies down a darker path and shows like Daredevil have completely thrown aside the family market. Ant-Man has a lighter tone, and is intended to bring in younger audiences. Disney distribution chief Dave Hollis said, “We were able to successfully launch a new character and to do so in a way that expands the audience of who is coming to see our movies. In the long run, that’s of overwhelming value.” The fact that Marvel is able to compete against big family movies like Minions makes it a very valuable film. Families made up 22% of the opening weekend crowd for the “Avengers” sequel and 26% of ticket buyers for the “Guardians” film. Ant-Man captured 28% which is huge.

5) One More Number One Opening
Marvel's had a streak of films opening in it's opening weekend and Ant Man makes it their 12th consecutive win. No other studio can boast those kinds of numbers and considering everything that was against it this is a huge win for marvel.

6) Ant-Man is Opening International Markets
This movie had a huge opening abroad as well. International markets are getting more important every day and this movie opened up some new markets for Marvel. This was the biggest Marvel film in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand. It's bigger than Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger. In Asia, it’s out pacing Guardians Of The Galaxy.

What do you think of Ant-Man's opening weekend. Is it a win for Marvel?

About the Author: Maurice Mitchell
I'm an avid science fiction fan, former professional graphic designer and certified blerd. After the death of my Star Wars action figures I use my powers for good and not for evil.
Visit my concept art blog: http://filmsketchr.blogspot.com

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  1. Considering the size of the superhero (no pun intended) I'd say it was a big win. Word of mouth will keep the money coming in. I thought the movie was great and very funny. My third favorite of the year so far.

  2. I agree with the family friendly aspect. I am going to see it with my son latter today.

  3. Its cool they are catering to the family, and younger crowd. Missing Comicon was not a good move for Marvel.

  4. Missing Comic-Con was Disney's idea since they have their own thing going on but it was pretty shortsighted.

  5. Everyone says they're planning to watch it next week so the movie's not over yet!

  6. Awesome David! Let us know how it is!

  7. Just got back and it was good. Definitely a heist movie more than a superhero one. Not that that is a bad thing. ;-)

  8. Those are great numbers. I saw something else at the theater today, but I plan on seeing this.

  9. Yeah plus Marvel did pretty well with their private show, so it kinda makes sense.

  10. If they'd gone to Comic-Con it would easily have hit $100 million

  11. Awesome David and a real change of pace for the company

  12. Check it out Medeia! There are some other good movies out right now.

  13. I think it's great for the youngsters good movies to spend the summer enjoying. I'll see it when my son brings it home, but I'm glad it's doing well. If Alex enjoyed it I know it's a good one!

  14. I didn't realize Captain America and Thor had such small openings. What did the first Iron Man do?

    Ant Man was a really fun movie.

  15. Tyrean MartinsonJuly 21, 2015 at 6:31 AM

    It's great that they made it more family-friendly. Although my kids are older, we don't always want to see the darker fare out there. I'm hoping to see it this week.

  16. I saw it yesterday with my girlfriend, and I gotta say, it was better than I expected. Definitely looking forward to seeing it again when it comes out on DVD and Blu-ray. Here's a link to my review: http://www.michaelabayomi.com/2015/07/ant-man-movie-review.html

  17. I've been wondering about this one b/c I remember when 'Superman Returns' had a similar opening and was considered to be a flop.

  18. Iron Man had a pretty amazing weekend at $100.8 million. I guess even back then they knew.


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