13 years after its original release, Avatar is once again No. 1 at the box office. The film earned $30.5 million at the global box office this past weekend — good enough for the top spot worldwide.
For the theatrical re-release, filmmaker James Cameron remastered his 2009 blockbuster in 4K High Dynamic Range. “We authored the film for the big screen, for the giant screen, in 3D. [N]ow we’ve remastered it in 4K, in high-dynamic range and some 48-frame-per-second sections in the film. It’s looking better than it ever looked, even back in its initial release,” Cameron explained during a recent virtual press conference.
The re-release earned $10 million domestically, which put it at third behind Don’t Worry Darling and The Woman King. It added another $20.5 million internationally, including No. 1 openings in France, Italy, Taiwan, and Thailand.
Avatar was the highest-grossing film of all time until Avengers: Endgame dethroned it in 2019. But a 2021 reissue in China allowed Avatar to reclaim its No. 1 spot; this week’s re-release bumps up its lifetime box office gross to nearly $3 billion worldwide.
The re-release of Avatar comes ahead of four planned sequel films, the first of which — Avatar: The Way of Water — is set to open in theaters on December 16th, 2023.