Leid Stories—Black Panther Movie Breaks Box Office Records and the Hearts of Activists Bemoaning A Strategic Hollywood Coup—02.20.18

It’s already one for the movie record books. The weekend opening of Black Panther in the United States and Canada alone raked in an estimated $235 million, while international ticket sales, not including major markets like China, Japan and Russia, added another $169 million to the film’s debut total.

On the one hand, Black Panther’s spectacular box office success validates longstanding arguments that the industry, at its own financial peril, has clung to the racist status quo instead of pursuing available new markets and demographics with new products relevant to them. On the other hand, is the aggressive pursuit of new audiences—in the way Black Panther has gone about it—fraught with too many risks that the industry is simply recalibrating itself until it finds a new racist equilibrium?