'Avatar' Sequel Now Tied For 2022's Third Top-Grossing Flick, Headed For $1B

Having generated $31.5 million domestically and $52.2 million internationally on Dec. 26, “Avatar: The Way of Water” has in two weeks pulled in $955.1 million in box office sales ($293 million in North America and $661 million abroad), putting it neck-in-neck with “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” ($955.7 million) for 2022’s third highest-grossing movie to date.

The “Avatar” sequel — although it still has a long way to go to approach the original’s title of highest-grossing release in history, at $2.97 billion — has already surpassed 2022 hits “Minions: Rise of the Gru” ($939 million), “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” ($800 million), “The Batman” ($770 million) and “Thor: Love and Thunder” ($760 million).

By next week, “The Way of Water” is expected to surpass $1 billion in ticket sales, to become just the third movie this year to do so, along with “Top Gun: Maverick” ($1.48 billion) and “Jurassic World Dominion” ($1 billion).

Director James Cameron has said that “The Way of Water” will need to gross about $2 billion to break even, but that is likely to be an uphill battle, given that box office in China will be hampered by its latest COVID outbreak and that there will be no release in Russia (where the original “Avatar” earned $100 million), noted Variety.

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