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Doctor Strange Soars Past Thor 2 at the Worldwide Box Office

By Ryan Scott — December 12th, 2016

After more than a month in theaters, the magic isn't wearing off on Marvel's Doctor Strange. The movie held on in the top five over the weekend, bringing in another $4.6 million domestically. And international audiences are still turning out to see the movie as well. With another impressive weekend under its belt, Doctor Strange has officially passed Thor: The Dark World at the worldwide box office, making it the 7th highest grossing Marvel Studios movie.

According to Box Office Mojo, Doctor Strange has now grossed $645 million worldwide. That was enough to very narrowly overtake Thor: The Dark World, which grossed $644 million during its box office run in 2013. It probably doesn't hurt that audiences and critics seem to like Doctor Strange more than Thor 2, if Rotten Tomatoes is to be believed. At the moment, Doctor Strange currently has a 91 percent approval rating from critics and an 89 percent audience score, while Thor: The Dark World holds a less impressive 66 percent critic rating and a 77 percent audience score. Good word of mouth could definitely be a factor here.

This is just the latest impressive feat that Scott Derrickson's Doctor Strange has managed to accomplish so far at the box office. It is also the highest-grossing debut solo movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The previous record holder was Iron Man, which grossed $585 million. The highest debut for a standalone franchise in the MCU was Guardians of the Galaxy back in 2014, which managed to gross a very impressive $773 million worldwide. That record is still a possibility for Doctor Strange, especially when considering that the movie still has to open in Japan, which won't happen until January 27. As Marvel Studios, and Disney as a whole has proved, these movies tend to perform very well overseas.

Considering the movie is slowing down on the domestic side of things, $773 million worldwide may be a bit of a stretch at this point, but not impossible. At the moment, Doctor Strange has grossed $222 million domestically, so if it does overtake Guardians, it will be thanks to international dollars. While Guardians of the Galaxy is not a certainty, Doctor Strange could overtake Captain America: The Winter Soldier ($714 million) to become the 6th highest grossing movie in the MCU. Even if the movie didn't make another dollar, Marvel Studios is probably very happy with the results, especially considering that this was a very different kind of movie. Since audiences responded well to it, that opens the door for other possibilities down the line.

Disney is having a flat out phenomenal year at the box office and Doctor Strange has been a big part of that in the last quarter of the year. With the help of the magic touch of Stephen Strange, Disney could be looking at a take of more than $7 billion globally for 2016, which would give them the all-time record currently held by Universal ($6.89 billion). If you are one of those who haven't seen it, Doctor Strange is still in theaters for at least a few more weeks. The God of Thunder will return next winter in Thor: Ragnarok, perhaps Thor will be able to revive his box office glory at that time?

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