Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has suffered a 63% drop in ticket sales at the box office since last weekend.
After the death of actor Chadwick Boseman, fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe film Black Panther weren’t sure exactly how director Ryan Coogler would handle the highly anticipated sequel, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The newest entry to Marvel’s Phase Four proved to be a financial success when it opened in theaters on November 11, bringing with it a compelling story of female empowerment and a touching tribute to Boseman himself. However, Box Office Mojo reports that Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has had a disappointing second weekend at the box office, with projections from experts showing a 63% decrease from last weekend.
The steep drop that Black Panther: Wakanda Forever experienced at the box office this past weekend reflects a trend for movies opening in theaters as of late. In its first weekend, the sequel to 2018’s Black Panther took in $209 million total domestically, which brought theaters back into pre-pandemic numbers as it was the fourth best overall weekend of the year for movies. The film only grossed $67.3 million in its second weekend, and while that is not a bad showing for movies released in theaters these days, it’s a remarkable decrease in comparison to the 2018 figures.
Overall, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has grossed over $546 million at the worldwide box office against a budget of $250 million. Comparatively, Black Panther ended up with a box office take of over $1.3 billion against a budget of $200 million. With Boseman absent from the sequel, parent company Disney and director Ryan Coogler had to make tough decisions about how to present a story without T’Challa, aka the Black Panther made famous by Marvel Comics.
Even though the domestic haul for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever at the box office hasn’t been what industry experts had projected for the film’s release thus far, critics and audiences seem to be responding to the sequel’s overall message sans Boseman. Rotten Tomatoes currently ranks the film as Certified Fresh with an 84% on its Tomatometer based on 371 critics’ reviews, as well as an Audience Score of 95% from over 10,000 ratings from verified users to the site. The sequel had a lot to live up to critically prior to its debut, as 2018’s Black Panther was one of the most well-received entries to the Marvel Cinematic Universe financially and critically.
Chadwick Boseman’s absence is felt throughout Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which might have added to the sharp decrease in box office returns during its second weekend in theaters. The movie showcases a strong female-led ensemble cast, with Letitia Wright, Angela Bassett, Danai Gurira, Michaela Coel, and Lupita Nyong’o taking center stage. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever introduces some new faces to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, including Dominique Thorne as Ironheart and Tenoch Huerta as Namor, the new antagonist of the franchise that seeks protection of his underwater civilization by fighting against the people of Wakanda.