While Marvel’s The Avengers (Disney – May 4) has the advantage of being the first movie out of the gate this summer, something that often helps a movie do more business by summer’s end, it does seem to have a limit on business based on previous Marvel movies, even if early reviews and word-of-mouth are overwhelmingly positive.
Then again, it’s hard to deny the anticipation for Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises (Warner Bros. – July 20), the follow-up to his $533 million grossing hit, which returns Christian Bale to the role of Batman for the third time. While this one doesn’t have the morbid curiosity factor that went along with Heath Ledger’s death–he won an Oscar post-humously for the role of the Joker–it has Anne Hathaway as Catwoman, which could be a genius way of bringing women into see the movie. The previous movie delivered on so many levels that we expect a lot of people to rush out and see the sequel, allowing it to take the opening weekend record that it previously held but lost to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 last year.
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