Box office: ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ skyrockets to $600 million, only 12th movie ever to do so

Top Gun: Maverick” is officially the story of the summer, at least at the box office. This week, the Tom Cruise sequel became the 12th movie ever to gross $600 million domestically, as it creeps closer to Disney-Pixar’s 2008 movie “Incredibles 2,” which grossed $608 million. Last month, “Top Gun 2” easily whizzed past Cruise’s all-time highest-grossing movie, “War of the Worlds,” and then it crossed the $500 million mark on June 25.

For a little context, Cruise just turned 60. He has had a career that’s spanned 40 years with just three Oscar nominations during that time. Many, including myself, think that “Maverick” will bring Cruise back to the Oscars with the possibility of getting in both as an actor AND as the movie’s producer, since it’s apt to get into the Best Picture race, as well.

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“Maverick” has six movies to pass on its way to $700 million, although one has to wonder if anything is possibly going to slow it down. Will Paramount and theater chains eventually give up some of those screens playing “Maverick” for newer movies? So far, it hasn’t been impacted much by the release of four major blockbusters, including this week’s “Thor: Love and Thunder.”

I know people who have seen the movie three or four times now, and every week, new people seem to be discovering it, which means that $700 million is not impossible, even if it might be slower to get there than it got to $500 million or $600 million.

SEE Box office: All time domestic top-grossing movies

For more context, the six movies between “Maverick” and “Black Panther” (Marvel’s highest-grossing solo character not named Spider-Man with $700.4 million) are:

“Incredibles 2″ (2018) – $608.6 million
“Star Wars Episode VIII – The Last Jedi” (2017) – $620.2 million
“The Avengers” (2012) – $623.4 million
“Jurassic World” (2015) – $653.4 million
“Titanic” (1997) – $659.4 million
“Avengers: Infinity War” (2018) – $678.8 million

Currently, the highest grossing movie domestically is 2015’s “Star Wars Episode VII – The Force Awakens” with $936.7 million. Rounding out the Top 4 are 2019’s “Avengers: Endgame” at $858.4 million, 2021’s “Spider-Man: No Way Home” at $804.8 million and 2009’s “Avatar” at $760.5 million.

It’s doubtful “Maverick” will catch up to “Spider-Man: No Way Home” in third place with the astounding haul it made after opening just before last Christmas, but “Maverick’s” success would mean that we’ve had two movies combined grossing $1.4 billion domestically since the pandemic began, so we can probably presume things are getting back to the “before times,” at least in terms of movie-going.

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