The Avengers broke a box office record this weekend, debuting with $200.3 million in sales. Just as The Hunger Games’ success was, in part, due to the extensive marketing campaign prior to the film’s release, industry watchers say The Avengers can also credit the marketing effort for the stellar outcome.
“They combined traditional marketing — TV spots, trailers — with plenty of outreach on Facebook and Twitter. Marketers will be studying this for years to come,” BoxOffice.com’s Phil Contrino tells MTV.com.
Though the box office outcome gives Disney a reason to smile following the John Carter disaster (which will very likely be studied as well), there are some people who found reasons to complain.
Samuel L. Jackson, who plays Nick Fury in the film, went on Twitter to voice his opinion about the mostly negative review from NY Times critic A.O. Scott, calling for his ouster, but knowing it would never happen.
And the Pentagon had an issue with the fact that this movie — about a group of superheroes saving the Earth — was a little too fantastic.
“We couldn’t reconcile the unreality of this international organization and our place in it,” Phil Strub, the Defense Department’s Hollywood liaison told Wired. The military is normally excited about the opportunity to participate in Hollywood blockbusters, and does pop up here and there in this film despite the Pentagon’s ridiculous reservations.
That said, the world has Avengers fever, and though it’s hard to tell at this point how much ticket sales will fall off in the second week, the movie is still a hit.
Here, The Los Angeles Times lays out some of the other lessons gleaned from the movies’ success, some related to film promotions including the branding power of superheroes and the importance of critics.