With the perpetual rat race that is box office dominance casting a shadow over every other measure of success for a feature film, it can be a little disheartening to think that a film's worth can be reduced to a series of statistics about how much money it has raked in. However, sometimes those records are well-earned products of clever marketing and earned good will from a film studio, which makes Avengers: Infinity War's opening weekend $257 million feel well-earned and worthy of celebration. Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy seems to think similarly, as she released this congratulatory letter to Team Marvel yesterday after Star Wars: The Force Awakens was dethroned from the opening weekend box office record:
The immediate, knee-jerk reaction I had to this image is that it feels like one of Mickey Mouse's ears congratulating the other for growing a couple inches taller as the kaiju-sized mouse decimates the Hollywood landscape underneath his giant cartoon feet. And you know what? That's a fair take. But there's also a long history of directors and producers congratulating each other on breaking previous opening weekend records, starting with Steven Spielberg congratulating his friend George Lucas on the immediate success of Star Wars. Here are a few of those letters:
So what do you think? Is this a harmless bit of intra-industry tradition or a blatant display of corporate bragging? What happens if Avengers 4 ends up usurping Infinity War's current top spot? I guess Kevin Feige and the Russo brothers write an awkward letter to themselves, with an image of Thanos awkwardly trying to pass the Infinity Gauntlet from one hand to the other that he can't even put back on because it's too full of money (...someone with talent please draw this).