Saying the 2018 box office has been successful would be quite the understatement.

The global box office is projected to hit a record $41.7 billion, according to Deadline, surpassing the previous all-time high of $40.6 billion set in 2017. Domestically, the box office is nearing $11.9 billion, up 7% from 2017’s $11.1 billion. This year’s domestic box office numbers are also set to surpass previous record-holder 2016, which came in at $11.4 billion. The domestic box-office boost this year was driven in large part by Black Panther, which made more than $700 million alone.

“I give a lot of credit to Black Panther,” Erik Davis, managing editor at Fandango said. “It was the kind of film that infected pop culture in such a way that brought people back to the movie theater.”

The disproportionately high numbers by Black Panther, now the third highest grossing film in U.S. history, also lended to breaking another box office record. Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War were the top grossing IMAX films of 2018, launching the motion-picture technology corporation to its first year ever surpassing the billion-dollar mark.

Infinity War came in second at the domestic box office with $678.8 million, while Incredibles 2 raked in $608.6 million. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom ($416.7 million) and Deadpool 2 ($324.4 million) ended up rounding out the top 5 films at the box office. With the exception of the Jurassic World sequel, 2018 was the year of the superhero film. Nine superhero films graced the silver screen in 2018 — grossing more than $2.9 billion at the domestic box office, or about 25.5 percent of total ticket sales. Overall, attendance was also up by about 4 percent, doing away with 2017’s notion that ticket sales are just too costly.

This year wraps up proving two things: moviegoers buy an experience, not a movie, and a predominantly Black cast can carry not only a film but a nation’s commercial success at the box office.

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