2018 Box Office Review

“Black Panther” and other Disney superheroes powered Hollywood to a record year at the box office, which is expected to finish 2018 with ticket sales up about 6% from last year’s returns. At the current pace, the U.S. and Canadian box office will end the year with returns of around $11.8 billion, according to executives and analysts, compared with $11.1 billion in 2017. The current record, $11.4 billion, was set in 2016.

In all, Hollywood released nine superhero films in 2018, grossing more than $2.9 billion at the domestic box office, or about 25.5 percent of total ticket sales, according to data compiled by Comscore. “This notion of superhero fatigue, I have yet to see any evidence of it,” Dergarabedian said.

Audiences also want to see these big-budget, action-packed films on the big screen and will pay to do so. “I give a lot of credit to ‘Black Panther,'” Erik Davis, managing editor at Fandango, which sells movie tickets, said. “It was the kind of film that infected pop culture in such a way that brought people back to the movie theater.”

Disney’s “Black Panther” garnered more than $700 million domestically and an additional $646.8 million internationally, during its run in theaters this year. It is now the third-highest-grossing movie in U.S. history. “It reminded people how fun it is to go to a big movie in a packed theater,” he said. The film was also well received by critics. “Black Panther” received a Golden Globe nomination and is expected to be nominated for an Academy Award next year.

Disney hasn’t always been a powerhouse at the box office, however. While the company has held a significant portion of the market share over the last few decades, it was only in the last five years that Disney has captured such a high percentage of sales. In 2008, Disney accounted for only 10.5 percent of the U.S. box office. However, its 2009 acquisition of Marvel Studios and subsequent release of “Iron Man 2” in 2010, which garnered $312 million domestically, helped boost Disney’s market share.

The production company got another lift in 2015, with the release of its first Star Wars film, “The Force Awakens.”


Todd “Bubba” Horwitz