Black Panther: Wakanda Forever sets a November record, but doesn’t beat Black Panther; Anya-Taylor Joy chose the devil over Disney; Margot Robbie will not reboot Pirates of the Caribbean, after all.
But First: This one’s for screenwriters. Are you a fan of the “midpoint reversal”? If so, you’ll love this piece by Nicholl Fellow Haley Bartels about what Finding Nemo can teach us about the crucial midpoint of a film. And screenwriting in general.
Box Office: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever set a November box-office record with a $181 million opening weekend take. It earned $330 million. Deadline also has some remarkable Marvel Cinematic Universe stats: The MCU has had nine of the top 15 opening weekends ever, and seven MCU movies since 2021 have grossed $2.3 billion, representing more than one-fifth of the the industry’s $11 billion domestic box office in that time.
Comparison: The original Black Panther had a $202 million opening weekend in 2018, and scored $242 million when you add in President’s Day, per Box Office Mojo. It went on to be the top-grossing film domestically in all of 2018, though it came in second to Avengers: Infinity War worldwide.
That Ending: If you’ve seen Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, or don’t mind spoilers, here are some thoughts on its ending and a certain character’s name. And we’ll go deep on the film on the latest episode of the Low Key Podcast, out tomorrow. It’s available anywhere you get podcasts.
Today in Good Decisions: Anya Taylor-Joy says in a new Harper’s Bazaar interview that she was offered a Disney channel pilot and Robert Eggers’ The Witch on the same day. She chose the one where her character is tempted by the devil: “I remember it was the same day I got asked to be in a Disney Channel pilot, and it was so exciting to be offered anything at all that I ran around the house like a loon,” she said. “But I just had this really good feeling about The Witch that made me willing to forego the Disney experience for the thing that felt unknown to me, the thing that felt sacred.” The Witch ended up being her breakthrough film.
Dead Pirates: Margot Robbie tells Vanity Fair that her planned Pirates of the Caribbean movie isn’t moving forward at Disney. “We had an idea and we were developing it for a while, ages ago, to have more of a female-led — not totally female-led, but just a different kind of story — which we thought would’ve been really cool,” she said of the project. “But I guess they don’t want to do it.”
Other Margot Robbie Goals: Robbie, who is about to reunite with Brad Pitt in Damien Chazelle’s Babylon, tells Vanity Fair that she’d also like to work with Paul Thomas Anderson, Bong Joon Ho, and Céline Sciamma. Also, in case you missed it, here’s our 2020 Margot Robbie cover story.
Scenes From a Bad Sleepover: Here’s a red-band scene from the new Luca Guadagnino cannibalism romance Bones and All, starring Timothée Chalamet as a drifter and Taylor Russell as a young woman struggling to make friends. Guadagnino promises us that once audiences see Bones and All, “they don’t care about the cannibalism. They see the movie as a fable for love.” Enjoy.
Main image: Anya Taylor-Joy in her breakthrough role in The Witch.