Marvel Studios/Walt Disney
By Bloomberg
February 27, 2019

“Star Wars” may have sputtered some, but “Avengers” looks to keep delivering big for Walt Disney Co.

“Avengers: Endgame,” the fourth film in the Marvel superhero series, is expected to set a weekend box-office record when it opens April 26. Researcher Exhibitor Relations predicts $282 million in North American ticket sales, topping the $258 million mark set last year by “Avengers: Infinity War.”

“‘Infinity War’ left audiences with a cinematic cliffhanger,” Jeff Bock, the researcher’s senior analyst, said in an email. “The only thing that could really affect the opening weekend would be a running time that exceeded three hours, which has yet to be confirmed by Disney.” A long movie can mean fewer showtimes.

Disney owns nine of the 10 biggest weekend movies ever, including new “Star Wars” pictures. Those have delivered a more mixed performance. A recent spinoff, “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” was a disappointment at $393 million globally. “Star Wars: Episode IX, ” the last film in a trilogy, opens in December.

“Endgame” is the second of two Marvel films due in coming months. On March 8, Disney releases “Captain Marvel,” starring Brie Larson in the title role. Weekend forecasts for that picture are more modest, ranging from $118 million at Exhibitor Relations to $160 million at Box Office Pro.

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