As James Cameron’s Avatar once again became the highest-grossing film of all time worldwide today, a long-held Hollywood tradition of the previous record-holder paying homage continued.
Marvel Studios, whose Avengers: Endgame was just eclipsed by Avatar, tweeted congratulations to Cameron, as well as producer Jon Landau and “all of the Na’vi Nation” for “reclaiming the box office crown.” In a reference to Endgame, the Marvel post said, “We love you 3000.”
Avengers: Endgame directors Anthony and Joe Russo also weighed in, saying, “Passing the gauntlet back to you.”
The official Avatar account and Cameron re-tweeted Marvel’s post with a heart emoji (see the mutual love below).
With its rerelease in China this weekend, Cameron’s 2009 sci-fi pic overtook Marvel’s Avengers: Endgame, which had previously topped Avatar as the worldwide box office record-holder in July 2019. Through Saturday, Avatar‘s global box office is now estimated at $2.8B versus Endgame‘s $2.797B.
The shift in box office fortunes was made possible by Avatar‘s current re-release in China which began on Friday and resulted in the movie adding over $12M through two days to close what had been a roughly $7.8M gap between it and Endgame.
Thusly, Avatar‘s account also thanked “our fans in China for coming out to see Avatar on the big screen this weekend! This crown belongs to Na’vi Nation – it couldn’t have happened without you.”
A practice of taking out ads to pat each other on the back began in 1977 when Steven Spielberg congratulated buddy George Lucas after Star Wars overtook Jaws at the domestic box office. It carried on from there including when Lucas later gave a shout-out to Cameron as Titanic unseated Star Wars in 1998. In 2015, Disney/Marvel and The Avengers paid tribute to Universal’s Jurassic World and its record-smashing opening weekend. Later that year, Uni returned the hat tip as Disney/Lucasfilm’s The Force Awakens rode past the dinosaurs, moving to social media for the first time. Then in 2019, Cameron saluted Endgame for overtaking Titanic and in July that year Cameron again said bravo when Endgame crossed Avatar.
Here are today’s tweets, so far:
Congratulations to @JimCameron ,@JonLandau , and ALL of Na'vi Nation for reclaiming the box office crown! We love you 3000. @OfficialAvatar pic.twitter.com/WlMWRcL15y
— Marvel Studios (@MarvelStudios) March 13, 2021
💙 @MarvelStudios @Avengers https://t.co/T74gEwUWml
— James Cameron (@JimCameron) March 13, 2021
Passing the gauntlet back to you… @JimCameron
Thanks for the beautiful art @bosslogic. pic.twitter.com/URSxUMzf8D
— Russo Brothers (@Russo_Brothers) March 13, 2021
Irayo to our fans in China for coming out to see Avatar on the big screen this weekend! This crown belongs to Na’vi Nation – it couldn’t have happened without you. @jonlandau @JimCameron pic.twitter.com/6PWgrV1geg
— Avatar (@officialavatar) March 13, 2021
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