What are the all-time highest-grossing films? Four of the top 20 highest-grossing films of all time were released last year, and we’ve already added two more this year. The Avengers: Endgame currency holds the title of being the highest-grossing film worldwide. Meanwhile, the live-action remake of The Lion King has reached the Top 10. Those figures are, of course, distorted by increasing ticket prices and population growth. No film will equal Gone with the Wind’s $390 million box-office turnout during its 1939 release.
Many of the biggest box office movies, except for Titanic and two Disney films, are part of a franchise. However, regardless of whether a film is part of a franchise or not, creating a blockbuster is still a mammoth of a task. Take the Avengers, for example. Several movies have already built their success, yet showrunners still find ways to top every new release. For that, the credit goes to the Russo Brothers.
Here are six of the most commercially successful films to hit theaters:
1.Avengers: Endgame (2019)
Box office: $2.796 billion
Directors: Joe Russo, Anthony Russo
Where does it start? When it comes to Avengers: Endgame, the issue is more about the direction toward which Kevin Feige and his team have been steering the story and the audience for 11 years. Though several three-hour-plus movies and even a few 20-film franchises have been produced, nothing compares to what Disney and Marvel Studios have accomplished. In the end, however, the entire cast and crew of the franchise proved that all investments made for them were well worth it after grossing over $2.796 billion in the box office. It sure is a feat that will go down in cinematic history.
Box office: $2.79 billion
Director: James Cameron
It’s no surprise that Avatar is one of the highest-grossing films of all time. It is, after all, the first of its kind. The film itself was an investment of epic proportions. Cameron also believes that “the movies” can turn viewers. That’s why every aspect of his film bears the Herculean effort of genuinely brilliant worldbuilding. Through his efforts, Cameron managed to tell the simple tale of Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and his seemingly impossible rescue of Pandora’s Na’vi people from the destructive powers of colonialism.
Box office: $2.19 billion
Director: James Cameron
James Cameron’s hit epic, Titanic, is now a pop-culture classic almost 20 years after its theatrical debut. From its filmmaking marvels to the perfectly casted ensemble, the Titanic has undeniably etched its place among Hollywood greats down to its iconic soundtrack. Cameron may have a bad ear for dialogue, but he’s a good storyteller, setting a Romeo-and-Juliet remake aboard the doomed ocean liner and peppering it with historical details, innovative special effects, and jaw-dropping visuals. In the end, the movie was able to rack in a massive $2.9 billion income, an astounding return for their investments.
4.Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)
Box office: $2.07 billion
Director: J.J. Abrams
The Force Awakens was the antidote to fans’ near-fatal Prequel-itis. This act of restorative filmmaking was primarily achieved by J.J. Abrams and his team by returning to the “dirty future” aesthetic that made the Original Trilogy feel authentic. That’s not to say CGI isn’t present. Thanks to the abundance of investment money made for the film, The Force Awakens struck a near-perfect balance between realistic and special effects.
5.Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
Box office: $2.05 billion
Directors: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
When we talk about the big-screen adaptations of comic book classics, Avengers: Infinity War is epic in a way that it has become the gold standard for superhero movies. That’s what happens when seasoned filmmakers take their sources seriously, avoiding needless melodrama and fully appreciating the grandeur, the sheer spectacle, of it all. While the film was not the conclusion, it did bring in a massive income boost to the entire cast and crew, with over $2.05 billion in sales in the box office. Now that’s more than enough money to shoot the credit scores of everyone involved in the production.
6.Jurassic World (2015)
Box office: $1.67 billion
Director: Colin Trevorrow
Jurassic World is the fourth installment of the paleontological franchise, but it is most notable as the second chapter in Chris Pratt’s sudden rise to stardom. Pratt, who seems to have been born to play lovable jerks to a certain degree, put his goofy tenor to good use in Guardians of the Galaxy. With Jurassic World, he’s almost entirely shed the skin in favor of imitating the 1950s B-movie canon’s hard-jawed macho guys. As if the film’s brand awareness wasn’t enough, the sight of Pratt riding a motorcycle alongside a quartet of raptors should be enough to sell Colin Trevorrow’s film to the masses. Along with others like it, this scene allows Jurassic World to act as a thrilling roller-coaster ride.