A new Spider-Man has swung to the top of the box office.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, an animated superhero film focusing on Peter Parker passing the torch to a new Spider-Man named Miles Morales, claimed the No. 1 spot at the box office this weekend with a $35 million domestic gross and a $56 million worldwide total. And with the holiday moviegoing season upon us — not to mention the movie’s critical praise, good word of mouth, and Golden Globe nomination for Best Animated Feature — there’s room for Spider-Verse to cash in even more.
The amount of money Into the Spider-Verse brings in is of great interest to Hollywood insiders and comics fans alike because of what the movie represents.
In Into the Spider-Verse, Spider-Man is biracial — Morales’s parents are black and Puerto Rican — so the movie’s success (or lack thereof) inevitably becomes a data point in the ongoing conversation around the entertainment industry’s commitment to diversity. In particular, recent successful superhero movies like Wonder Woman and Black Panther, which both feature non-male and nonwhite heroes, have bucked myths and stereotypes, disproving the ideas that “people won’t go see a female superhero movie” or that “black movies don’t travel.”
People believe that the better these more inclusive and diverse movies perform at the box office, the more of them we’ll see in the future. Spider-Verse could chip away at those follies even further. There’s already an Into the Spider-Verse sequel in development, as well as a female spinoff based on its Gwen character.
Elsewhere at the cineplex this weekend, and unfortunately for Mortal Engines fans, the box office wasn’t especially kind to the Peter Jackson steampunk fantasy boondoggle. The film, which reportedly cost more than $100 million to make, only brought in $7.5 million in the US and, as Variety reports, is ultimately expected to lose $100 million.