After breaking box office records during its dominant theater run, Black Panther is finally headed for home release in early May. But there will hardly be a break for Marvel superhero movies, as Avengers: Infinity War is already stepping up to the plate later this month. Apparently, fan enthusiasm for Marvel superheroes has not waned at all, because ticket presales for Infinity War are currently outpacing the last seven Marvel Cinematic Universe films combined at the same point in the sales cycle — including Black Panther.
This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (which began with 2008’s Iron Man), and it’s all been leading to Infinity War. Over the course of the filmography, Marvel superheroes have come across different powerful artifacts known as Infinity Stones. Infinity War will see the galactic tyrant Thanos (Josh Brolin) launch an assault on Earth so that he can collect all six Stones into the Infinity Gauntlet and use its incredible power to kill half the universe. Perhaps this payoff explains why the mega-crossover is currently outselling Black Panther, Thor: Ragnarok, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Doctor Strange, Captain America: Civil War, and Ant-Man combined.
Despite Black Panther‘s impressive box office (it recently passed Titanic on the all-time domestic rankings), Infinity War is currently selling double the amount of tickets as Black Panther during the same amount of time. According to Fandango, it might even be on pace to surpass its impressive predecessor. This might have something to do with the fact that Infinity War picks up where Black Panther left off. At the end of Ryan Coogler’s film, King T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) announced plans to open up the nation of Wakanda to the rest of the world, in all its technologically-advanced glory. In the most recent trailer for Infinity War, we already see what that looks like: Wakanda sheltering other superheroes and standing against the armies of Thanos. General Okoye (Danai Gurira) was hoping more for a Starbucks or two, but you take what you can get.
Avengers: Infinity War will hit theaters April 27.