Avengers: Endgame
The theatrical release poster for "Avengers: Endgame". The characters depicted are seen on a starry background.
Theatrical release poster
Directed by
  • Anthony Russo
  • Joe Russo
Screenplay by
  • Christopher Markus
  • Stephen McFeely
Based on
Produced byKevin Feige
Starring
CinematographyTrent Opaloch
Edited by
Music byAlan Silvestri
Production
company
Distributed byWalt Disney Studios
Motion Pictures
Release dates
Running time
181 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$356–400 million[2][3]
Box office$2.799 billion[4]

Avengers: Endgame is a 2019 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers. Produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, it is the direct sequel to Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and the 22nd film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Directed by Anthony and Joe Russo and written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, the film features an ensemble cast which includes Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Don Cheadle, Paul Rudd, Brie Larson, Karen Gillan, Danai Gurira, Benedict Wong, Jon Favreau, Bradley Cooper, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Josh Brolin. In the film, the surviving members of the Avengers and their allies attempt to reverse Thanos's actions in Infinity War.

The film was announced in October 2014 as Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2, but Marvel later removed this title. The Russo brothers joined as directors in April 2015, with Markus and McFeely signing on to write the script a month later. The film is a conclusion to the story of the MCU up to that point, ending the story arcs of several main characters. Its plot revisits several moments from earlier films, bringing back actors and settings throughout the franchise. Filming began in August 2017 at Pinewood Atlanta Studios in Fayette County, Georgia, shooting back-to-back with Infinity War, and ended in January 2018. Additional filming took place in the Metro and downtown Atlanta areas, New York State, Scotland, and England. The official title was announced in December 2018. With an estimated budget of $356–400 million, the film is one of the most expensive films ever produced.

Avengers: Endgame premiered in Los Angeles on April 22, 2019, and was released in the United States on April 26 as part of Phase Three of the MCU. The film received praise for its direction, acting, musical score, action scenes, visual effects, and emotional weight, with critics lauding its culmination of the 22-film story. It grossed $2.799 billion worldwide, surpassing Infinity War's theatrical run in eleven days and setting a number of box-office records; it was the highest-grossing film of all time from July 2019 to March 2021. The film was nominated for Best Visual Effects at the 92nd Academy Awards, among other accolades. A fifth Avengers film and a sixth, Avengers: Secret Wars, are scheduled for release in 2026 and 2027, respectively.

Plot

In 2018, twenty-three days after Thanos erased half of all life in the universe,[a] Carol Danvers rescues Tony Stark and Nebula from deep space and they reunite with the remaining AvengersBruce Banner, Steve Rogers, Thor, Natasha Romanoff, and James Rhodes—and Rocket on Earth. Locating Thanos on an uninhabited planet, they plan to use the Infinity Stones to reverse his actions but find that Thanos has destroyed them. Enraged, Thor decapitates Thanos.

Five years later, Scott Lang escapes from the Quantum Realm.[b] Reaching the Avengers Compound, he explains that he experienced only five hours while he was trapped. Theorizing that the Quantum Realm allows time travel, they ask a reluctant Stark to help them retrieve the Stones from the past to reverse Thanos's present actions. Stark, Rocket, and Banner, who has merged his intelligence with the Hulk's strength, build a time machine. Banner notes that altering the past does not affect their present; any changes create alternate realities. Banner and Rocket travel to Norway, where they visit the Asgardian refugee settlement of New Asgard and recruit an overweight, despondent Thor. In Tokyo, Romanoff recruits Clint Barton, who became a vigilante after the erasure of his family.

Banner, Lang, Rogers, and Stark time-travel to New York City during Loki's attack in 2012.[c] At the Sanctum Sanctorum, Banner convinces the Ancient One to give him the Time Stone after promising to return the Infinity Stones to their proper points in time. At Stark Tower, Rogers retrieves the Mind Stone from Hydra sleeper agents; Stark and Lang's attempt to steal the Space Stone fails, however, allowing 2012-Loki to escape with it. Rogers and Stark travel to Camp Lehigh in 1970, where Stark obtains an earlier version of the Space Stone and encounters his father Howard. Rogers steals Pym Particles from Hank Pym to return to the present and sees his lost love, Peggy Carter.

Rocket and Thor travel to Asgard in 2013;[d] Rocket extracts the Reality Stone from Jane Foster. Thor is encouraged by his mother, Frigga, and retrieves his old hammer, Mjolnir. Barton, Romanoff, Nebula, and Rhodes travel to 2014; Nebula and Rhodes go to Morag and steal the Power Stone before Peter Quill can,[e] while Barton and Romanoff travel to Vormir. The Soul Stone's keeper, Red Skull, says that it can only be acquired by sacrificing a loved one. Romanoff sacrifices herself, allowing Barton to get the Stone. Rhodes and Nebula attempt to return to their own time, but Nebula is incapacitated when her cybernetic implants link with her past self; this allows 2014-Thanos to learn about his future self's success and the Avengers' attempt to undo it. 2014-Thanos sends 2014-Nebula forward in time to prepare for his arrival.

Reuniting in the present, the Avengers place the Stones into a gauntlet that Stark, Banner, and Rocket have built. Banner, who has the most resistance to their radiation, uses the gauntlet to undo Thanos's disintegrations. Meanwhile, 2014-Nebula (impersonating her future self) uses the time machine to transport 2014-Thanos and his warship to the present and destroys the Avengers Compound. Present-day Nebula convinces 2014-Gamora to betray Thanos, but is unable to convince 2014-Nebula and kills her. Thanos overpowers Stark, Thor and a Mjolnir-wielding Rogers; he summons his army to retrieve the Stones, intent on using them to destroy the universe and create a new one. A restored Stephen Strange arrives with other sorcerers, the restored Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy, the Ravagers, and the armies of Wakanda and Asgard to fight Thanos's army. Danvers also arrives and destroys Thanos's warship, but Thanos overpowers her and seizes the gauntlet. Stark steals the Stones and uses them to disintegrate Thanos and his army, sacrificing himself.

After Stark's funeral, Thor appoints Valkyrie as the new king of New Asgard and joins the Guardians. Rogers returns the Stones and Mjolnir to their proper timelines and remains in the past to live with Carter. In the present, an elderly Rogers passes his shield to Sam Wilson.

Cast

Several actors from Infinity War reprised their roles in Endgame, including Benedict Cumberbatch as Dr. Stephen Strange,[53] Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa / Black Panther,[54] Tom Holland as Peter Parker / Spider-Man, Zoe Saldaña as Gamora,[41] Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff,[55] Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson / Falcon,[56] Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes / Winter Soldier,[57] Tom Hiddleston as Loki,[58] Pom Klementieff as Mantis,[59] Dave Bautista as Drax the Destroyer,[41] Letitia Wright as Shuri,[60] William Hurt as Thaddeus Ross, Cobie Smulders as Maria Hill,[41] Winston Duke as M'Baku,[61] Tom Vaughan-Lawlor as Ebony Maw,[41] Jacob Batalon as Ned,[62] Vin Diesel as Groot,[41] Chris Pratt as Peter Quill / Star-Lord,[55] Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Ross Marquand as Red Skull / Stonekeeper, Michael James Shaw as Corvus Glaive, Terry Notary as Cull Obsidian,[41] and Kerry Condon as the voice of Stark's suit AI F.R.I.D.A.Y.[63] Monique Ganderton again provided motion capture for Proxima Midnight.[41]

Also reprising their roles from previous MCU films were Evangeline Lilly as Hope van Dyne / Wasp,[64] Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, Rene Russo as Frigga, John Slattery as Howard Stark, Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One, Hayley Atwell as Peggy Carter, Marisa Tomei as May Parker, Taika Waititi as Korg,[62] Angela Bassett as Ramonda,[41] Michael Douglas as Hank Pym, Michelle Pfeiffer as Janet van Dyne, Linda Cardellini as Laura Barton, Maximiliano Hernández as Jasper Sitwell,[62] Frank Grillo as Brock Rumlow,[65] Robert Redford as Alexander Pierce, Callan Mulvey as Jack Rollins, and Ty Simpkins as Harley Keener.[62] Sean Gunn reprised his role as Kraglin and was credited for the role,[66] although he is not clearly visible in the film.[67] Natalie Portman appears as Jane Foster in footage from a deleted Thor: The Dark World (2013) scene and a voiceover when Foster is talking in the distance.[68] James D'Arcy reprised his role as Edwin Jarvis from the MCU television series Agent Carter, the first time a character introduced in an MCU television series appeared in an MCU film.[69]

Hiroyuki Sanada played Akihiko, a Yakuza boss in Tokyo who opposes Barton. Lexi Rabe played Morgan Stark, Tony and Pepper's daughter.[41][66] Katherine Langford was cast as an older Morgan, but her scene was cut from the final film.[70][71] Emma Fuhrmann played an older Cassie Lang, Scott's daughter, after the character was played as a child by Abby Ryder Fortson in previous MCU films.[72] Avengers co-creator Stan Lee had a posthumous cameo in the film, digitally de-aged as a car driver in 1970, in his final film appearance.[73] Ken Jeong and Yvette Nicole Brown had cameo appearances as a storage facility guard and a S.H.I.E.L.D. employee, respectively.[62] Co-director Joe Russo (credited as Gozie Agbo) had a cameo appearance as a grieving gay man, the first appearance of an openly homosexual character in an MCU film.[74] Joe's daughters Ava and Lia Russo played Barton's daughter Lila and a fan of Hulk, respectively. Thanos creator Jim Starlin also appeared as a grieving man.[75] The character Howard the Duck appeared in a non-speaking cameo.[76]

Production

Further information: Production of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame

Joe and Anthony Russo, seated; Joe wears glasses, and Anthony is in front of a microphone.
Anthony and Joe Russo, the film's directors

In October 2014, Marvel Studios announced a two-part sequel of Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015) entitled Avengers: Infinity War. Part 1 was scheduled to be released on May 4, 2018, and Part 2 was scheduled for May 3, 2019.[77] Marvel's plan was to film both parts of Infinity War back-to-back.[78] Anthony and Joe Russo were hired to direct the films in April 2015.[79] The next month, Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely signed on to write screenplays for both parts of the film.[80] Producer Kevin Feige said that the sequel was titled as two parts of a single film because of shared elements but they would be "two distinct" projects, not one story split across two films.[81] The Russos decided to re-title the two films to remove any misconceptions in May 2016,[82] and Marvel left the second film untitled that July.[83] Feige and the Russo brothers indicated that the title was being withheld because it would give away plot details for this film and Infinity War.[84][85]

Principal photography began on August 10, 2017,[86] under the working title Mary Lou 2[87] at Pinewood Atlanta Studios in Fayette County, Georgia, with Trent Opaloch the director of photography.[88][89] The film and Infinity War were shot with ARRI Alexa IMAX 2D cameras, the first time a Hollywood feature film was shot entirely with IMAX digital cameras.[90] Filming was done that month in the Gulch area of downtown Atlanta, near the Five Points MARTA station, and in Piedmont Park.[91] Feige said that the films were originally scheduled to be filmed simultaneously but were ultimately shot back-to-back: "It became too complicated to cross-board them like that, and we found ourselves—again, something would always pay the price. We wanted to be able to focus and shoot one movie and then focus and shoot another movie."[92] Anthony Russo originally felt that it made more sense to shoot the films simultaneously for financial and logistical reasons (including the large number of cast members),[93] and had suggested that "some days we'll be shooting the first movie and some days we'll be shooting the second movie. Just jumping back and forth."[88] The 2013 Asgard scenes were shot at Durham Cathedral in Durham, England during production of Infinity War in early May 2017.[94][95] Production wrapped on January 11, 2018,[96] although additional filming took place in New York's Dutchess and Ulster counties in June 2018.[97] Re-shoots began by September 7, 2018,[98] and ended on October 12.[99] More re-shoots were done in January 2019.[100] Location shooting also took place in St Abbs, Scotland, which doubled for New Asgard in Norway.[101] Evans and Hemsworth earned $15 million each for the film.[102]

The film's official title, Avengers: Endgame, and final U.S. release date of April 26, 2019, were revealed with the film's first trailer in December 2018.[103] Visual effects for the film were created by Industrial Light & Magic, Weta Digital, DNEG, Framestore, Cinesite, Digital Domain, Rise, Lola VFX, Cantina Creative, Capital T, Technicolor VFX, and Territory Studio.[104] Like previous MCU films, Lola worked on the de-aging scenes; the film has 200 de-aging and aging shots.[105] Downey, Evans, Ruffalo, Hemsworth, Johansson, and Renner were de-aged to their 2012 appearances for scenes recreated from The Avengers (2012).[106] Michael Douglas, John Slattery, and Stan Lee were also de-aged for the 1970 New Jersey scene,[73][107] and Douglas's appearance in The Streets of San Francisco was referenced.[108] Lola aged Evans for the final scene, where he is an elderly man, with make-up and a stand-in.[106] Jeffrey Ford and Matthew Schmidt were the film's editors.[109]

Music

Main article: Avengers: Endgame (soundtrack)

A standing Alan Silvestri, gesturing with one hand
Alan Silvestri composed the film's score.

Alan Silvestri, who composed the score for The Avengers, was announced in June 2016 to be returning to score Infinity War and Endgame.[110] The Russos began working with Silvestri on the Endgame score in early November 2018,[111] and it was completed in late March 2019.[112] A soundtrack album with Silvestri's score was released digitally by Hollywood Records on April 26, 2019, with a physical release on May 24.[113] A video for the track "Portals", composed for the climactic "Avengers assemble" scene in which reinforcements arrive for the Avengers, was released on June 13.[114]

Silvestri described the score as having the franchise's most versatile tone, ranging from "thunderous percussion and powerful brass" for the action scenes to minimalist, jazz-inspired music for Ant-Man and the Quantum Realm. He reprised his themes from the previous Avengers films and Captain America: The First Avenger, including material he wrote for Thanos and the Infinity Stones in Infinity War. Silvestri found writing the music to end Captain America's story poignant, since he had "been on this journey with him since the beginning".[115] The film also used the Ant-Man (2015) theme by Christophe Beck, the Doctor Strange (2016) theme by Michael Giacchino, and the Captain Marvel theme by Pinar Toprak.[116] The songs "Come and Get Your Love" by Redbone and "It's Been a Long, Long Time" by Jule Styne and Sammy Cahn were also used after previously being heard in Guardians of the Galaxy and Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), respectively.[117][118]

Marketing

The marketing campaign for Endgame cost over $200 million, the most for any Marvel Studios film. Promotional partners included Stand Up to Cancer, Mastercard, Ulta Beauty, the Audi e-tron GT concept car (which appears in the film), McDonald's, GEICO, Coca-Cola, Google, General Mills, Hertz, Ziploc, Oppo, and Synchrony Financial.[119] A year before the film's release, Germain Lussier of io9 spoke on the approach Marvel might have to take in marketing the film, given the end of Infinity War where many established characters die. He questioned if those characters would appear on posters and in toy campaigns, and if the actors playing them would participate in press events leading up to the film's release. Lussier felt that Disney and Marvel could focus on the original Avengers team members (most of the living characters), but noted that it would be more beneficial to show the return of the dead characters; this would create a "mystery and curiosity about how they come back" and a "whole new level of interest" for the film "while having all the stars front and center".[120] Feige said in June 2018 that the dead characters would not be featured in the film's marketing.[121] He presented a behind-the-scenes video from the film at CineEurope,[122][123] and said that its marketing campaign would begin at the end of 2018.[124] In early December 2018, before the first trailer's release, Graeme McMillan of The Hollywood Reporter spoke about the "fevered anticipation" surrounding it and felt it "remarkable", mostly "fan-created, without [the] noticeable direction from Marvel or the filmmakers involved"; knowledge about the film, without promotion was, "a kind of brand awareness" that was unusual. McMillan urged Marvel not to release any trailers for the film, since "the advanced level of enthusiasm [...] [was] likely to build" before its release; a trailer would take away the "Schrödinger's cat-esque position", as it was "almost guaranteed" to disappoint fans.[125]

The first trailer for the film was released on December 7, 2018.[126] Dustin Sandoval, vice president of digital marketing for Marvel Studios, said that the marketing team "made the choice" to omit the "title or hashtag" for the film in its trailer posts, allowing fans to see the trailer without spoiling it by watching "at the end".[127] Richard Newby, also of The Hollywood Reporter, felt that although little new material was revealed in the trailer, it offered a "somber glimpse of a universe made unrecognizable" and let the viewer consider "the ending of Avengers: Infinity War and our questions of loss". Newby noted that the trailer highlighted the characters' "humble beginnings" with its visual language, and left viewers with "just as many questions as we had before".[126] Austen Goslin of Polygon said that the title references a line by Doctor Strange to Tony Stark in Infinity War and a line by Stark in Age of Ultron. Goslin said, "The scene surrounding this line in Age of Ultron is one of the most important ones in the movie. Things look dark, and the group of heroes face an enemy they don't think they can defeat." The Endgame trailer "mirrors this perfectly", and "shows us that the Avengers' two most prominent characters are who they've always been: Iron Man, a pessimist who keeps fighting no matter how hopeless things look, and Captain America, an optimist who believes that nothing is hopeless when the world's heroes fight together."[128] The trailer was viewed 289 million times in its first 24 hours and was the most-viewed trailer in that time period, surpassing the record of Avengers: Infinity War (230 million views). It set a record for Twitter conversation for a film trailer in the first 24 hours, generating 549,000 mentions.[129] By January 3, 2019, BoxOffice's "Trailer Impact" metric service indicated that 77 to 78 percent of people surveyed who viewed the Endgame trailer in the past three weeks had expressed interest in seeing the film. In the three weeks it was measured by the service, the trailer was number one for all and had the top two percent of respondents express interest in seeing the film since the service's introduction in March 2018.[130]

The second trailer for the film and its theatrical release poster were released on March 14, 2019. All 13 actors on the poster received top billing except for Danai Gurira, whose name appeared in the poster's bottom billing block with Benedict Wong, Jon Favreau, and Gwyneth Paltrow (none of whom appeared on the poster). Despite this, her exclusion from the top billing prompted criticism from some fans.[38][131] Petrana Radulovic of Polygon said that how an actor is credited on a poster "is a complex process" based on "dealing with agents, fees, and movie star demands."[38] Marvel Studios released an updated poster later that day, with Gurira in the top billing.[38][131] The second trailer was viewed 268 million times in the first 24 hours, becoming the second-most-viewed trailer in that time period (behind the first trailer).[132]

Release

Theatrical

Avengers: Endgame had its world premiere at the Los Angeles Convention Center on April 22, 2019.[133][134] Disney converted the convention center's Hall K for the film's premiere, working with Dolby and QSC Audio to install a 70-foot (21-metre) screen, Dolby Vision projectors, and a Dolby Atmos sound system. The convention center also held the red carpet arrival and after-party for the premiere.[134] The film was released in Australia, China, and other parts of Asia and Europe on April 24,[135] in the United Kingdom on April 25,[136] in the United States and India on April 26,[103][135] and in Russia on April 29[135] in IMAX and 3D.[137][138] It was originally scheduled to be released in the United States on May 3.[77] Radio Liberty alleged that the Russian government postponed the film's release in that country to promote Russian-produced films.[139] Avengers: Endgame is part of Phase Three of the MCU.[140]

Following the release of the second trailer for Marvel Studios' Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) on May 6, Marvel began showing it at the end of Endgame screenings with a message before the film from Far From Home star Tom Holland telling the audience to stay until the end of the credits to see the trailer.[141] In June, Feige announced that Avengers: Endgame would be re-released in theaters with seven minutes of new post-credits footage which included a Stan Lee tribute, an unfinished deleted scene, and the opening scene of Far From Home. A limited-edition poster would be given out at select theaters. The re-release began on June 28 in 1,040 theaters in the United States.[142][143]

Home media

The film was released for digital download by Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment on July 30, and on Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray, and DVD on August 13.[144] Streaming became exclusive to Disney+ on November 12, 2021.[145] The digital and Blu-ray releases include behind-the-scenes featurettes, audio commentary, deleted scenes, and a blooper reel.[144] Despite being filmed with IMAX cameras and released in IMAX theaters in the 1.90:1 aspect ratio, the home-media release has the cropped 2.39:1 aspect-ratio version used for non-IMAX screenings.[146] The IMAX Enhanced version of the film was made available on Disney+ on November 12, 2021,[147] and it earned $107.8 million from DVD and Blu-ray sales in the US.[3]

Reception

Box office

Main article: List of box office records set by Avengers: Endgame

Avengers: Endgame grossed $858.4 million in the United States and Canada and $1.941 billion in other territories for a worldwide total of $2.799 billion.[4] It was the highest-grossing film of all time[148] until it was surpassed by Avatar (2009) due to the 2021 re-release in China,[149] and was the second-highest-grossing film of all time in the United States and Canada.[150] Gone with the Wind (1939) remains the highest-grossing film (adjusted for inflation), and Avengers: Endgame is the fifth-highest-grossing film of all time worldwide.[151]

The film had a worldwide opening of $1.2 billion, the biggest of all time, and nearly double Infinity War's previous record of $640 million.[152] It is the fastest film to reach the $1 billion and $1.5 billion marks, doing so in five and eight days respectively.[153] Deadline Hollywood estimated that the film would break even five days after release, "unheard of for a major studio tentpole during its opening weekend".[2] The website calculated Avengers: Endgame's final net profit as $890 million, accounting for production budgets, marketing, talent participation, and other costs; box-office grosses and home-media revenue placed it first on its list of 2019's "Most Valuable Blockbusters".[154]

On May 4, the film's earnings at the global box office surpassed the theatrical run of Infinity War. It was the fastest film to gross $2 billion worldwide, reaching that threshold in 11 days; Avatar did so in 47 days.[155] Avengers: Endgame was the fifth film to surpass this threshold (after Avatar, Titanic (1997), Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), and Infinity War),[156] and reached the $2.5 billion mark in 20 days; Avatar did so in 72.[157]

Pre-sale records

Endgame was one of 2019's most anticipated films of 2019 in late December 2018, ranked second by IMDb and first by Fandango and Atom Tickets.[158][159] Due to high demand when pre-sale tickets became available in the U.S. on April 2, 2019, customers on Atom Tickets and Fandango experienced long wait times and system delays; AMC Theatres' website and app crashed for several hours. Fandango announced that day that the film was its top-selling pre-sale title for the first 24 hours, breaking Star Wars: The Force Awakens's record in six hours. Atom said that the film was the website's bestselling first-day film (outselling Aquaman (2018) by four times), and Regal Cinemas reported that Endgame had sold more tickets in its first eight hours than Infinity War did in its first week.[160] The film grossed $120–140 million in pre-sales.[135] Fandango announced the day before release that Endgame was its biggest pre-selling title of all time, surpassing The Force Awakens with over 8,000 sold-out showtimes across the US.[161]

In India, the film sold one million tickets in one day for its English, Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu-language screenings; 18 tickets were sold every second.[135] In China, pre-sale tickets became available on April 12; a record one million were sold in six hours, surpassing Infinity War's first-24-hours total in the first hour[162] and earning $114.5 million (RMB 770 million) in pre-sales.[163]

United States and Canada

Multicolored line graph
Chart of the North American box-office gross of Avengers: Endgame against the four highest-grossing films in the market

On April 4, industry tracking projected that the film would gross $200–250 million domestically during its opening weekend; some insiders saw those figures as conservative, and expected a $260–300 million debut.[164][165] By the week of its release, domestic estimates had risen to $260–270 million and some insiders suggested that a $300 million debut was possible. The film played in 4,662 theaters, 410 of which were in IMAX; it was the widest release ever, surpassing the record of Despicable Me 3's (2017) 4,529 theaters.[135][166] Avengers: Endgame earned $357.1 million in its opening weekend, breaking Infinity War's record by nearly $100 million. It set records for Friday ($157.5 million, including $60 million from Thursday night previews), Saturday ($109.3 million), and Sunday ($90.4 million) totals, and had a higher total weekend gross than the previous box-office high of all films combined ($314 million).[167] The film earned an average of $76,601 per theatre, breaking records for highest per-theatre average for a nationwide release ($59,982 for The Force Awakens) and the inflation-adjusted record held by Return of the Jedi (approximately $66,400, set in 1983).[168][169] It earned $36.9 million the following Monday and $33.1 million on Tuesday, both the third-highest of all time.[170][171] In its second weekend, the film made $147.4 million (the second-best second weekend ever) for a 10-day total of $621.3 million. It was the fastest film to pass the $600 million mark, ahead of The Force Awakens's 12 days and less than half the 26 days it took Infinity War.[172] The film grossed $64.8 million the following week, the fourth-best third weekend ever. It passed the $700 million mark, tying The Force Awakens's record of 16 days.[173] Endgame was finally dethroned in its fourth weekend by newcomer John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019).[174] It earned $17.2 million the following weekend (a total of $22.3 million over the four-day Memorial Day weekend), crossing the $800 million threshold domestically.[175] The film was added to 1,040 theaters during its tenth-weekend re-release and earned $6.1 million, an increase of 207 percent from the previous weekend.[176] It earned $1.2 million in its thirteenth weekend, breaking Avatar's all-time record.[177]

Other territories

Endgame was projected to gross around $680 million internationally over its first five days, for a global debut of $850–950 million.[178][179][135] The film was initially projected to gross $250–280 million in China in its opening weekend[135] but earned a record $107.5 million (RMB 719 million) in the country on its first day; this included $28.2 million (RMB 189 million) from midnight, 3 am and 6 am screenings, eclipsing The Fate of the Furious's (2017) record of $9.1 million. Due to the record-breaking first day and word of mouth (with a 9.1 on local review aggregator Douban and a 9.3 on ticket website Maoyan), debut projections were increased to over $300 million.[163] The film made $169 million on its first day, the highest total of all time. Its largest markets after China were India ($9 million), South Korea ($8.4 million, the largest non-holiday single-day gross ever), Australia ($7.1 million), France ($6 million), and Italy ($5.8 million). The film over-performed, opening with $866 million overseas. Its largest markets, setting records for the best-ever opening in each country, were China ($330.5 million, RMB 2.22 billion), the United Kingdom ($53.8 million), South Korea ($47.4 million), Mexico ($33.1 million), Australia ($30.8 million), Brazil ($26 million), Spain ($13.3 million), Japan ($13 million),[152] and Vietnam ($10 million).[180] The film earned $21.6 million over its first four days in Russia after a government-caused delay of its premiere.[139][181][182]

In its first week, the film's top five largest international markets were China ($459.4 million), the United Kingdom ($68.2 million), South Korea ($60.3 million), Mexico ($48.6 million), and India ($40.9 million).[183] A week after its release, it became the highest-grossing foreign film of all time in China[184] and India.[185] The film's running total passed $1.569 billion from international markets in its second weekend, passing Titanic as the second-highest film overseas of all time.[156] By January 2021, its top international markets were China ($632 million), the United Kingdom ($115 million), South Korea ($105 million), Brazil ($86 million), and Mexico ($78 million).[4]

Critical response

The performances of (top, l-r) Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, (bottom, l-r) Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, and Jeremy Renner as the original six Avengers were widely praised by critics.[186]

Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported an approval rating of 94%, with an average score of 8.2/10 based on 557 reviews. The website's critical consensus reads, "Exciting, entertaining, and emotionally impactful, Avengers: Endgame does whatever it takes to deliver a satisfying finale to Marvel's epic Infinity Saga."[187] Metacritic (which uses a weighted average) gave the film a score of 78 out of 100 based on 57 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[188] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an A+ grade on an A+-to-F scale, the third Marvel film to receive the grade after The Avengers and Black Panther (2018). PostTrak audiences gave the film stars out of five and an 85-percent "definite recommend".[167]

Writing for NPR, Glen Weldon gave the film a positive review and found it a worthy sequel to its predecessor: "The Russos' decision to stick close to the experiences of the remaining Avengers proves a rewarding one, as they've expressly constructed the film as an extended victory lap for the Marvel Cinematic Universe writ large. Got a favorite character from any Marvel movie over the past decade, no matter how obscure? Prepare to get serviced, fan."[189] In his Rolling Stone review, Peter Travers gave the film four stars out of five: "You don't have to make jokes about the clichéd time travel plot – the film is ready, willing and able to make its own, with Back to the Future coming in for a serious ribbing."[190]

Peter Debruge of Variety wrote, "After the must-see showdown that was Infinity War, the Russo brothers deliver a more fan-facing three-hour follow-up, rewarding loyalty to Marvel Cinematic Universe."[191] J. R. Kinnard of PopMatters wrote, "Big budget action filmmaking doesn't get much better than this."[192] Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter said, "[W]hat comes across most strongly here, oddly enough for an effects-driven comic-book-derived film, is the character acting, especially from Downey, Ruffalo, Evans, Hemsworth, Brolin, and Paul Rudd".[193] Richard Roeper, writing for the Chicago Sun-Times, gave the film four stars and praised its "emotional punch" and the "funny, well-paced, smart, expertly rendered screenplay by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, crisp direction from Anthony Russo and Joe Russo, [...] and the universally stellar performances".[194]

The New York Times reviewer A. O. Scott gave the film a positive-but-guarded review: "Endgame is a monument to adequacy, a fitting capstone to an enterprise that figured out how to be good enough for enough people enough of the time. Not that it's really over, of course: Disney and Marvel are still working out new wrinkles in the time-money continuum. But the Russos do provide the sense of an ending, a chance to appreciate what has been done before the timelines reset and we all get back to work."[195] Justin Chang of the Los Angeles Times wrote that "Avengers: Endgame achieves and earns its climactic surge of feeling, even as it falls just short of real catharsis".[196] Some called the film a notable improvement over its predecessor, Avengers: Infinity War, including Brian Tallerico of RogerEbert.com: Endgame is "a more patient, focused film [than Infinity War], even as its plot draws in elements of a dozen other movies."[197] Matt Zoller Seitz (also of RogerEbert.com) compared the film positively to Infinity War, which he considered "too crowded, too rushed and yet too long". Seitz called Endgame "a heartfelt and satisfying experience" and a "surprisingly relaxed, character-driven, self-aware yet sincere comedy [for] two-thirds of [the film]. Much of the script suggests a laid-back Richard Linklater movie with superheroes".[198] Joe Morgenstern of The Wall Street Journal cited Avengers: Endgame as the conclusion of the Infinity Saga, calling the final battle "inevitably unwieldy [...] but thrilling all the same, and followed by a delicate coda. So many stories. So many adventures. So much to sort out before the next cycle starts."[199]

Richard Brody was more critical of the film in The New Yorker, saying that its good acting was not matched by comparable skill from its directors: "The Russos have peculiarly little sense of visual pleasure, little sense of beauty, little sense of metaphor, little aptitude for texture or composition; their spectacular conceit is purely one of scale, which is why their finest moments are quiet and dramatic ones".[200] Anthony Lane of The New Yorker gave the film a negative review, finding it overdeveloped and overwrought: "The one thing you do need to know about Avengers: Endgame is that it runs for a little over three hours, and that you can easily duck out during the middle hour, do some shopping, and slip back into your seat for the climax. You won't have missed a thing."[201]

Accolades

Main article: List of accolades received by Avengers: Endgame

At the 92nd Academy Awards, Avengers: Endgame received a nomination for Best Visual Effects.[202] The film's other nominations include an Annie Award (which it won),[203] a British Academy Film Award,[204] and three Critics' Choice Movie Awards (winning two).[205] Its Wikipedia page was the most-viewed article of 2019, with 44.2 million views.[206] Endgame ranked 41st in a March 2020 Empire magazine poll of the 100 greatest films of the 21st century.[207] The Avengers' assembling moment was one of five finalists for an Oscars Cheer Moment in the "Oscars Fan Favorite" contest for the 94th Academy Awards in February 2022, despite the film's ineligibility for other Academy Awards that year.[208]

Future

Further information: Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase Six

In May 2018, Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger said about Marvel's plans beyond Endgame: "I'm guessing we will try our hand at what I'll call a new franchise beyond Avengers, but that doesn't necessarily mean you won't see more Avengers down the road. We just haven't made any announcements about that." Iger added that audiences should not assume that there would not be another Avengers film, due to the popularity of the characters and the franchise.[209] Shortly after the film's premiere, the Russo brothers said that they were not opposed to returning to the MCU in the future (due to their positive relationship with Marvel Studios) but did not plan to do so at that time.[210] In January 2021, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige said that another Avengers film would be produced "at some point".[211]

At the San Diego Comic-Con in July 2022, Feige announced Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and Avengers: Secret Wars, scheduled to be released on May 2, 2025, and November 7, 2025, respectively. The films would conclude Phase Six of the MCU.[212] Feige later said that the Russo brothers would not return to direct the films.[213] Destin Daniel Cretton, who directed Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021), was confirmed as director of The Kang Dynasty shortly afterwards.[214] In September, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (2023) writer Jeff Loveness was announced as writing the screenplay.[215] The next month, Loki season one (2021) head writer and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022) writer Michael Waldron was hired to write the screenplay for Avengers: Secret Wars.[216] Shortly afterwards, Secret Wars's release date was pushed back to May 1, 2026.[217] In June 2023, Disney delayed The Kang Dynasty to May 1, 2026, and Secret Wars to May 7, 2027.[218] Cretton had stepped down as director of The Kang Dynasty by November 2023,[219] when Waldron was hired to replace Loveness as the writer for The Kang Dynasty.[220] Jonathan Majors, who portrayed Kang the Conqueror and was expected to appear in both films, was fired by Disney and Marvel Studios in December 2023 after he was convicted of assault. By then, Marvel was referring to The Kang Dynasty internally as Avengers 5.[221]

Notes

  1. ^ Known as the Blip, and depicted in Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
  2. ^ In which he was trapped at the end of Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018)
  3. ^ During the events of The Avengers (2012)
  4. ^ During the events of Thor: The Dark World (2013)
  5. ^ As depicted in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

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