Move over, Avatar. Your days as the reigning box office champ are over as Marvel's Avengers: Endgame finally becomes the biggest movie of all time at the box office.
Released in December 2009, James Cameron's game-changing Avatar surged to commercial success off the back of 3D uplift and repeat viewings. Audiences simply couldn't get enough of the film-maker's immersive world of Pandora, aided by revolutionary motion-capture CGI that modelled the faces of the actors onto the film's Na'vi aliens.
However, Box Office Mojo reports Avengers: Endgame has now trumped Avatar – albeit only just (these figures are unadjusted for inflation). The Marvel epic has been coaxed to a global gross of $2.790 billion, just north of Avatar's total run of $2.789 billion. Endgame's success was boosted by a colossal opening weekend of $1.2 billion, plus a recent re-release that nudged the figures up even further.
Marvel president Kevin Feige made the initial announcement at Comic-Con, although it was a bit premature given the movie was $500,000 short of Avatar at the time. Disney boss Alan Horn said fans had taken the film to "historic heights".
Sure enough, it didn't take long for Cameron to send his congratulations...
And Endgame directors the Russo brothers responded in kind on Twitter...
Avengers: Endgame concluded the Infinity Saga and movingly resolved the journey of Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr). This set in motion the events of the recent Spider-Man: Far From Home, occupying a post-blip world (ie those brought back after super-villain Thanos's snap) as Peter Parker (Tom Holland) tries to live up to his mentor's legacy.
- Marvel Cinematic Universe: your essential guide to the series in order
- Marvel phase 4: the key release dates and movies you must know
- Spider-Man: Far From Home credit scenes – what do they mean for the future of the MCU?
The question is this: will Marvel be able to scale the heights of Endgame again in future? Feige announced the franchise's phase four slate at Comic-Con, occupied by the likes of Black Widow and Eternals, but there's no denying Endgame casts a long shadow. No mere movie, it was the culmination of 11 years worth of MCU history, which had grown and developed alongside its fans.
Don't forget that MCU movie Spider-Man: Far From Home is still on release in Cineworld. And you can join us in toasting Avengers: Endgame's box office triumph by tweeting your favourite Marvel moments @Cineworld.