Last weekend, Marvel Studios re-released Avengers: Endgame into theaters with additional footage cut from the film’s theatrical release. The film hasn’t surpassed Avatar as the highest-grossing film of all time, but it is now within $16 million of catching up. Avengers: Endgame‘s box office total is now $2.772.5 billion, which is $15.5 million short of Avatar’s $2.788 billion record.
Avatar also saw a theatrical re-release with additional footage in 2009. However, it’s release began in August and lasted for 12 weeks. Avatar was in theaters for a total of 34 weeks. Avengers: Endgame opened 11 weeks ago. Marvel fans wouldn’t be out of line to wonder if Disney could put Endgame back in theaters again, perhaps around awards season, to even the odds with Avatarand take its throne.
For his part, co-director Anthony Russo says he tries not to think about it. “I mean, lookit, I know it sounds very sensational and all but I try not to focus on it because there’s no — even if we don’t pass Avatar, there’s no way I want to have a shred of regret about anything associated with this movie,” Russo explained at the MTV Awards. “So I refuse to kind of consider it, you know?”
Avengers: Endgame already passed Avatar to become the second-highest grossing film ever at the domestic box office. Endgame‘s domestic box office total climbed past $800 million over the Memorial Day weekend and now sits at $847.9 million. Star Wars: The Force Awakens remains the highest-grossing film of all time at the domestic box office with $936.6 million.
“Kevin Feige and the Marvel Studios team have continued to challenge notions of what is possible at the movie theatre both in terms of storytelling and at the box office,” said Alan Horn, chairman of Walt Disney Studios, in a press release when Endgame had the first $1 billion global opening in box office history. “Though Endgame is far from an end for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, these first 22 films constitute a sprawling achievement, and this weekend’s monumental success is a testament to the world they’ve envisioned, the talent involved, and their collective passion, matched by the irrepressible enthusiasm of fans around the world.”
“From the very beginning with Iron Man, all we’ve wanted to do was tell stories that brought these characters to life onscreen the way we’ve experienced them as fans of the comics,” said Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios. “That we’ve had so many other successes in this journey leading to this unbelievable result with Avengers: Endgame has been almost entirely due to the fans around the world who have supported us through it all. Our directors, Anthony and Joe Russo, and our writers, Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, really brought this story home, and I am also incredibly thankful for our cast and filmmakers from across the MCU and all who’ve worked so hard to make these films the best they can be, including the amazing teams at Marvel Studios and Disney. And of course, without Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, none of this would have been possible.”
Avengers: Endgame directors Anthony and Joe Russo added, “We poured our heart and soul into Avengers: Endgame, hoping to tell a story that would inspire audiences around the world. Our family of cast and crew felt honored to be entrusted with bringing the Infinity Saga to a close. To Kevin Feige, everyone at Disney and Marvel, and the incredible, global community of fans – thank you.”