The blockbuster film Black Panther has not only inspired generations of black youth and adults but it has single-handedly proven that movies that feature a majority black cast can become lucrative internationally.
Black Panther destroyed the weekend box office, breaking cultural barriers and earning the highest debut ever for a February film, with an estimated three-day domestic gross of $192 million, said Disney, Marvel’s parent company.
The opening was the fifth highest-earning of any film, according to Disney. The only other movies that have brought in more are Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Jurassic World and The Avengers, according to The Associated Press.
Black Panther‘s massive marketing campaign didn’t hurt — The New York Times reports Disney spent nine months promoting it — but it also had the advantage of a built-in fan base. Stan Lee and Jack Kirby introduced the story to Marvel Comics’ readers back in the 1960s.
Black Panther stars Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa and Lupita Nyong’o as Nakia and is directed by Ryan Coogler. At age 31, Coogler helped make history. The Times reports Black Panther is the highest-grossing film ever by a black director.
The film has received stellar reviews from critics and audiences alike, with a 97 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes.