The 2015 Summer Movie Season kicks off in grand fashion as Avengers: Age of Ultron debuts and looks to Hulk smash records. The mystery surrounding how it performs in its opening is centered on one question: will it have the biggest domestic debut in movie history? In order to do so, it’ll need to top the record currently held by its 2012 predecessor. That magic number is $207.4 million.
All the favorites are back, including director Joss Whedon with Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, Hulk, Hawkeye, and more returning. Newbies include James Spader voicing the title character villain and Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen as Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. There are two more Avengers features already planned for 2018 and 2019. While a number of reviews say it doesn’t quite match the original, its 80% Rotten Tomatoes rating is solid.
There is little doubt that Ultron is highly primed to become summer’s largest grosser. Whether or not it reaches the $623M eventual mark of The Avengers remains to be seen (that’s good for the 3rd biggest hit ever behind Avatar and Titanic).
Some prognosticators are estimating it may not quite reach the heights of 2012 in its opening. The floor would seem to be in the $180M range, which would be just fine but still $25M under the first. While that’s certainly possible, I do believe Ultron will debut with around the same number of its predecessor… and a bit higher. That means I’m predicting Ultron will set a new benchmark in the category of all-time record openings and Disney and Marvel will be popping the champagne corks come next weekend.
Avengers: Age of Ultron opening weekend prediction: $212.7 million