'Doctor Strange 2' Conjures Second-Largest Pandemic Opening at Box Office
Walt Disney Pictures

'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness' reaffirms Marvel's dominance as it debuts to an estimated $185 million in North America, marking the biggest opening of 2022 so far.

AceShowbiz - Nothing is strange with "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" huge opening at box office. The latest Marvel release has conjured a magical $185 million debut in the North American territory, reaffirming the dominance of Disney's Marvel Cinematic Universe in theaters.

The long-awaited sequel to 2016's "Doctor Strange" delivered the biggest opening weekend of 2022 so far and the second-biggest debut in the COVID-19 pandemic era. It ranks below "Spider-Man: No Way Home", which still holds pandemic's biggest opening weekend as well as the second-biggest ever with $260 million, and "The Batman", which ranks as this year's biggest opening weekend with $134 million.

MCU has been a force to reckon with in the business since it started with "Iron Man" in 2008. However, it was shaken up last year due to the pandemic, with "Black Widow", "Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings" and "Eternals", all released in 2021, failing to cross the $100 million mark on their opening weekends.

"Summer blockbuster season is off to a roaring start with 'Doctor Strange' - an excellent sign for the phenomenal slate ahead," Rich Gelfond, CEO of IMAX, said in a statement about the moviegoing resurgence.

Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for Comscore chimed in, "This is a total win for the industry for whom the last two summers almost didn't exist in terms of box office." He added, "Marvel has been kicking off summers for over a decade. This is a return to normalcy."

"Doctor Strange 2" is benefitting as the follow-up to "Spider-Man: No Way Home", which sets up the multiverse storyline. The film picks up as Benedict Cumberbatch's Doctor Strange casts a dangerous spell that forces him to fight alternate versions of himself.

Internationally, the flick is also a huge hit, bringing in $265 million from 49 territories for a global total of $450 million.

Elsewhere in the domestic box office, former champion "The Bad Guys" is forced to move down to the runner-up position with an estimated $9.8 million. "Sonic the Hedgehog 2" also slides down one position to No. 3 with approximately $6.2 million.

"Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore" slips from No. 3 to No. 4 with an estimated $3.95 million, followed by "Everything Everywhere All at Once" which holds on to the fifth spot with approximately $3.3. million.

Top 10 of North America Box Office (May. 06-08, 2022):

  1. "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" - $185 million
  2. "The Bad Guys" - $9.8 million
  3. "Sonic the Hedgehog 2" - $6.2 million
  4. "Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore" - $3.95 million
  5. "Everything Everywhere All at Once" - $3.3 million
  6. "The Northman" - $2.8 million
  7. "The Lost City" - $2.5 million
  8. "The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent" - $1.5 million
  9. "Memory" - $1.2 million
  10. "Father Stu " - $800,000

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