‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Is Marvel’s 20th Box-Office No. 1 in a Row

Posted July 8, 2018 3:13 p.m. EDT

Even Marvel’s smallest characters pack a hefty punch. “Ant-Man and the Wasp” made $76 million at the domestic box office in its opening weekend, a figure that landed on the low side for the Disney-Marvel cinematic universe but still towered over all other releases this weekend.

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” is the sequel to “Ant-Man,” which made $57 million in its opening weekend in 2015. The new film follows Ant-Man, played by Paul Rudd, as he teams up with another shrinkable action star (played by Evangeline Lilly) to save her missing mother and the world. The film received positive reviews: “It’s a surprisingly enjoyable summer romp!” Manohla Dargis wrote in The New York Times.

The film, which cost at least $300 million to make and market worldwide, is the 20th in an astonishing string of No. 1 hits for Marvel, which has dominated box offices since “Iron Man” was released in 2008. The fact that even Ant-Man, a fairly peripheral character in the Marvel universe, could front an instant box-office smash is a testament to the studio’s lasting appeal. The film also did well overseas, bringing in $161 million total.

“The First Purge,” the tepidly reviewed fourth installment of the “Purge” franchise, took in $17 million in its first weekend, for a total of about $31 million since arriving Wednesday. The prequel film from Universal and Blumhouse Productions explores the origins of the “Purge,” in which crime in America is legal for one 12-hour period once a year. The five-day box office returns for the film marked a drop-off from the preceding “Purge” installment, which collected $40.1 million over its first five days.

“Incredibles 2” and “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” each continued to perform strongly, earning $29 million and $28.6 million, respectively. “Jurassic World” has now crossed $1 billion worldwide, while “Incredibles 2” has racked up $772 million total.

In limited release, the acclaimed science-fiction comedy “Sorry to Bother You,” which was written and directed by Boots Riley and stars Lakeith Stanfield, took in $717,302 across 16 theaters.