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Avatar 2 Outpaces The Original's Box Office Numbers In Its 3rd Week

Strong heart. Strong box office.

"Avatar: The Way of Water" is turning out to be quite the success at the worldwide box office. The conversation surrounding James Cameron's aquatic sequel to "Avatar" was contentious prior to its release. Many argued that the sequel would fail to live up the gargantuan financial estimations of the first film, which is currently the highest-grossing film of all-time, per The Numbers. With nearly $2.9 billion under its belt, "Avatar" stands out as a true financial behemoth that has yet to be rivaled.

Estimates prior to "The Way of Water's" December 16 debut suggested that the sequel could rake in over $500 million worldwide during its opening weekend (via Deadline). Doom and gloom began to permeate the conversation when the sequel, which focuses on Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and Neytiri (Zoe Saldaña) trying to raise a family, brought in $435 million worldwide instead.

Since its opening weekend, Cameron's long-gestating sequel has blown past the industry's negativity, with audiences showing up in droves to support his latest adventure on Pandora. Per The Numbers, "The Way of Water' was able to swoop in over $63 million domestically. Now, in its third week, the "Avatar" sequel has reached an impressive milestone, besting the original film's take. If that wasn't enough to prove Cameron's supremacy at the box office, his latest is set to overtake Maverick's #1 spot.

The Way of Water brought in $66 million during its third weekend

"Avatar: The Way of Water" managed to fish in over $66 million at the box office in its third weekend (via Variety). In a rare feat, James Cameron's sequel managed to pull in a 4% increase from its second weekend. The sequel continues to hold well, emulating similar legs as its original. The film's four-day domestic gross, which includes New Year's Day, stands at $86.3 million. Domestically, "The Way of Water" boasts over $440 million at the box office. 

In comparison, the original "Avatar" raked in $352 million during its third weekend (January 1, 2010), per The Numbers. However, the first film in the franchise did nab more domestically, reeling in $68 million for its third week. Despite that, the sequel is continuing to perform well. Globally, the film is standing tall with a $1.4 billion gross. The film will pass Tom Cruise's $1.48 billion-grossing "Top Gun: Maverick" in a few days, making "The Way of Water" the highest-grossing film of 2022. It remains to be seen just how far the "Avatar" sequel's run will go. 

With a relatively empty January (apart from "M3GAN"), "The Way of Water" should continue its impressive trajectory. Will James Cameron's latest be another $2 billion-grosser? Only time will tell.