Even after I’d seen the 20-minute Guardians of the Galaxy preview — and been totally won over by it — I was still worried that mainstream audiences wouldn’t give it a chance. The closer we got to release, the more positive buzz it built up online, but that’s not always a guarantee of box office success. After all, this was a weird movie, an unapologetic space opera full of talking trees and raccoons in an era where “science fiction movies” usually just meant depressing post-apocalyptic tales. Well, Marvel has spent the past month wiping the smug grin off the face of every last naysayer, and now Guardians has passed its most impressive milestone yet: it is now the highest grossing movie of the year at the domestic box office.
Earlier this week Guardians sailed past the former #1 and #2 domestic box office earners, Captain America; The Winter Soldier and The Lego Movie, respectively. Guardians’ domestic numbers are currently sitting at $274 million, easily surpassing Cap’s $259 million and The Lego Movie’s $257 million. When you factor in overseas box office, Guardians’ take swells to a staggering $547 million, which is pretty damned impressive for a movie about a bunch of obscure comic characters most people had never even heard of a year ago.