Captain Marvel, Marvel Studios’ first female-fronted superhero movie, launched with $153 million domestically and $455 million globally, according to studio estimates Sunday, making it one of the biggest blockbusters ever led by a woman.
Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers, a character who first debuted in Marvel Comics in 1968, had never before made it into the movies and was previously lesser known than many Marvel heroes. But Captain Marvel, which came in at the high end of the Walt Disney Co.’s expectations, ranks as one of Marvel’s most successful character debuts.
Only The Avengers movies, Black Panther, Captain America: Civil War and Iron Man 3 have opened better in the Marvel cinematic universe.
“She definitely pushed us higher, further, faster,” said Disney distribution chief Cathleen Taff.
Captain Marvel rocketed up other record books, too. It sets a new worldwide mark for a film directed or co-directed by a woman. Captain Marvel was helmed by the filmmaking team of Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, who previously made the indies Half Nelson and Mississippi Grind.
It’s the sixth largest worldwide debut ever. The only movie with a female lead that’s opened better globally was Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which grossed $529 million when it debuted in 2015.