Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Hollyood, CA, United States (4E) – The critically lauded “Ant-Man and the Wasp” starring Paul Rudd (Scott Lang) and Evangeline Lilly (Hope van Dyne) opened No. 1 at the U.S. box office over the weekend to hit $76 million from 4,206 North American locations. That’s a huge 33 percent leap from the original “Ant-Man,” which debuted at $57 million in 2015.
Overseas, “Ant-Man and the Wasp” raked-in $85 million, bringing the worldwide opening to $161 million. South Korea was its biggest foreign market, taking in $20.9 million, including previews. The movie is the 20th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to make No. 1 at the box office.
The huge numbers allowed Ant-Man and the Wasp to fly to the top of the heap during the weekend. Second placer, “The First Purge,” grossed $17 million from 3,031 theaters. “Incredibles 2,” now the top-grossing animated film of all time in North America, finished Sunday with some $503 million in total. “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” fell to third earning $29 million domestically and $28.6 million internationally this weekend.
Ant-Man and the Wasp also had a good story to tell and told it well. Rotten Tomatoes gave it an 86 percent rating, and critics in the main said the movie was fun.
“We are really thrilled about the results,” said Cathleen Taff, Disney’s head of domestic distribution,. “We continue to be amazed by what Kevin Feige (producer) and the team do with these films.”
Taff also said Lily is Marvel’s first female title character. “Kevin and his team always try to come up with a great story diversity. I think you see that come to play here,” she said.
The movie was produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It’s pacing 45 percent ahead of Ant-Man internationally.
Ant-Man and the Wasp had its world premiere in Hollywood on June 25, and was released on July 6 in the U.S. in IMAX and 3D.
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