The Hollywood Reporter is claiming that if it can edge the four-day Martin Luther King weekend at the box office, overcoming stiff opposition from The Book Of Eli and The Spy Next Door, it will be claiming a record for five weeks at the top and be well on its way to success.
The previous record was held by the 1999 film The Sixth Sense, and is seen as a particularly tough one to climb. However, is it particularly likely that Avatar will actually surpass the monolithic achievement of Cameron’s previous blockbuster, Titanic, which still sits pretty at the top of the table with $1.8 billion, sans adjustment for inflation?
I don’t think that it will actually pass Titanic, in all honesty. While Avatar has enjoyed widespread support and has grossed a sum equivalent to the GDP of a small Third World country, it is beginning to drop off. A lot of money has yet to be made, and while I’m sure it will make that and pass it on DVD, that’s not really applicable to the record.
Regardless, a science fiction film even being talked about as being one of the highest grossing of all time is such a remarkable achievement for the genre, it’s hard to quantify. I’ve seen a softening in attitudes toward sci-fi over the last few years thanks to a number of reasons, but imagine telling Jules Verne or HG Wells that the genre they helped birth would eventually become one of the most pre-eminent?
If nothing else, anyway, Avatar can take comfort in the fact that it’s made more cash than any other Thundercats movie before it. Now we just need to stop certain fantasists believing it’s real.