Top Gun: Maverick is an absolute juggernaut. And now, it’s in truly rarified air.
On Labor Day, the legacy sequel starring Tom Cruise became only the sixth film ever to cross the $700 million barrier at the domestic box office. And by passing Black Panther, Maverick is now the #5 highest grossing movie of all time in North America. It’s total gross is now at $701M and counting, placing it behind only Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man: No Way Home, and Avatar.
Even more impressive: Maverick reached those heights while flying back into the #1 slot for the Labor Day weekend — and in its 15th week of release, no less, a time frame in which most films (even blockbusters) have long since faded from their peak theatrical play. In fact, Top Gun: Maverick becomes the first film in history to be #1 movie over both the Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends of the same summer.
Nearly defeating it for the holiday frame was the expanded version of Spider-Man: No Way Home, the #3 All Time domestic grosser. Its return to theaters added 11 minutes to the original theatrical cut, mostly focused on comedic outtakes of the high school’s news team (including a new bonus scene at the very end of the credits). Tracking to finish #1 entering Labor Day, it trailed off to finish third with $6.5M, ticking its all-time North American gross up to $812.3M.
Brad Pitt‘s action-comedy Bullet Train shot up to second place, finishing with $7.3M for the four-day weekend, brining its total to $87.8M.
The other notable title to debut was the re-release of 1975’s original blockbuster Jaws. The Spielberg classic received its first ever run in IMAX theaters with 2D showings, coupled with a 3D option in regular theaters. The movie finished at #8 for the weekend with a total of $3.3M.
Another boost to theaters: Saturday was National Cinema Day. Theaters celebrated by offering $3 tickets for all movies (including premium screens like IMAX and Dolby Atmos). While the slashed prices reduced overall grosses, it encouraged 8.1 million moviegoers to show up at theaters across the country, making September 3 the highest-attended day of the year. Theaters and studios are hoping this loss-leader will continues to lure more and more people back to multiplexes post-pandemic.
Bringing things back to Maverick, its #5 ranking on the All Time chart may be where its ascent finally stops. Avatar stands at #4 with $760M, a milestone that may not be impossible for Maverick to reach but, at its current pace, its unlikely to bank the necessary $60M to pass James Cameron‘s former #1.
And even if it does, Avatar will get a re-release of its own at the end of the month, in anticipation of its sequel Avatar: The Way of Water opening this December, so it will ultimately have the last word between the two.