MCU movies always aim for a huge opening weekend, but Doctor Strange 2 has some really big ambitions, and with all those cameo characters that will appear in the movie, it is not hard to imagine it succeeding.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness will open in 4,400 North American theaters this weekend, and it is expected to get something between $160 million to $180 million at the box office. Some box office experts believe even $200 million is not impossible for a Doctor Strange sequel. That is something not a lot of movies have achieved.
Overseas, the Multiverse of Madness is targeting between $125 million to $140 million (it won’t be showing in China, Russia, and Ukraine).
That means Doctor Strange 2 could bring this weekend a total of $285 million to $340 million.
On the other hand, its budget is pretty large, it is around $200 million, but it also includes very large marketing fees, so it will probably have to earn three times its budget to just pay for its filming and marketing.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness has already earned $65 million in domestic pre-sales, which is more than most of the movies this year made in total.
If these domestic estimates stand, Doctor Strange 2 will have the biggest opening weekend of this year, and have the second-biggest opening weekend of the whole COVID era, left behind just by Spider-Man: No Way Home, which earned a huge $260 million.
No Marvel movies have managed to go over $150 million during the COVID-19 era, so this will be a big return (Spider-Man 3 was in a collaboration with Sony).
Other Marvel movies during this era have earned the following, Black Widow ($80 million, plus $60 million on Disney Plus), Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings ($75 million), and Eternals ($71 million).
To compare it a bit with the original Doctor Strange movie. Its 2016 predecessor opened to $85 million in North America and ended its theatrical run with $232 million domestically and $677 million globally. It is possible that Doctor Strange 2 will surpass it in its first week of showing.
We have to wait and see how far can it go and does it have what it takes to take over Spider-Man: No Way Home, which earned $1.89 billion worldwide. It will be a very hard battle.