In the battle for global box office records, James Cameron’s Avatar surpassed Avengers: Endgame over the weekend to reclaim its place as the highest-grossing film of all time. Avatar, which was re-released in China over the weekend, previously held the record until Endgame dethroned it in 2019.
The 2009 film’s total gross now stands at an estimated $2.802 billion, with the Avengers pic at $2.797 billion. (Both films, incidentally, are owned by Disney.)
“We are proud to reach this great milestone, but Jim Cameron and I are most thrilled that the film is back in theaters during these unprecedented times, and we want to thank our Chinese fans for their support,” Avatar producer Jon Landau said in a statement. “We are hard at work on the next Avatar films and look forward to sharing the continuation of this epic story for years to come.”
Marvel Studios also congratulated Cameron, Landau, and Avatar in a tweet, writing, “Congratulations to @JimCameron, @JonLandau, and ALL of Na’vi Nation for reclaiming the box office crown! We love you 3000.”
Going into the weekend, Endgame had amassed $2,797,501,328 globally, while Avatar came in at $2,789,679,794. On Friday alone, when Avatar was re-released, it grossed an estimated Rmb22.5M (or $3.5 million), placing No. 1 for the day.
The filmmaker responded to the news by sharing the announcement post from Marvel Studios and adding a heart emoji.
This isn’t the first time one of Cameron’s films has held the top spot. The three-time Oscar winner’s 1997 epic Titanic had the crown until Avatar snatched it away in 2010.