UPDATED, Monday AM writethru after 12:05 AM post: Disney has verified this morning what we saw in the middle of the night, that T'Challa recorded the second-best Sunday ever at the domestic box office. Its $60.1 million (higher than the industry's $59.55M estimate last night) ranks only behind the all-time record held by Disney/Lucasfilm's Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($60.5M on December 20, 2015). The total now pushes Black Panther to a three-day total of $201.8M, still the fifth-best domestic opening of all time after 2012's Avengers ($207.4M).
Disney does see Black Panther making $235M over four days, which means it will beat the Friday-Monday hauls of of Avengers ($226.3M) and Jurassic World ($234.1M). But there are those in the industry who believe T'Challa has a shot to be the second-highest four-day opener ever with as much as $242M-$245M — behind Star Wars: Force Awakens ($288M) but taking out Star Wars: The Last Jedi ($241.6M).
In order for Black Panther to claw his way to that height, it would mean that Monday's ease from Sunday would range between 30%-32%, or $40.3M, to $41.75M. Disney's projections this morning figure today will decline 45% from Sunday, in which case Presidents Day would yield $33.2M for a $235M Friday-Saturday-Sunday-Monday. Black Panther has ripped up all previous pre-summer comps, which has made Monday a challenge for many to predict; the film has gotten this high at the B.O. and there's no question about it going higher.
Another factor juicing ticket sales, as we mentioned earlier, is that the ages 18-24 crowd comes out in bulk after 10 PM, and that contributes to the swing factor with these forecasts by the time the sun comes up. No doubt people will continue to flock to the movies today, with ComScore's school calendar showing 88% K-12 out and 34% of all colleges off.
Drilling down on Black Panther's performance: Six out of the top 10 locations were in New York, two in Los Angeles (Arclight Hollywood and Burbank), Atlantic Station in Atlanta and DC's Tysons. Black Panther had 612 runs gross north of $100,000 for the weekend; of those, 119 venues did over $200K, 20 did $300K+, and five minted $400K. AMC Empire NY cleared $500K, while AMC Atlantic Station's shot past $600K over the three days. One studio analyst this morning projects a $500M final domestic B.O. for Black Panther.