How Did ‘Doctor Strange 2’ Make $450 Million This Weekend? Thank ‘WandaVision’

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After one year, the MCU’s expansion into Disney+ is already bearing box office fruit

Elizabeth Olsen WandaVision Doctor Strange Multiverse of Madness
Marvel Studios

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In November 2016, “Doctor Strange” opened to a solid $85 million domestic launch. Five and a half years later, “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” has blown its predecessor out of the water with a domestic debut of $187 million and $449.4 million worldwide, the second largest for any film since theaters reopened after the pandemic.

How did this sequel explode? Disney can probably thank the cultural success of Disney+’s first Marvel series, “WandaVision,” which has created a storytelling bridge between movie theaters and streaming that is starting to bear a lot of fruit.

“For us to be talking about the 11th highest domestic opening ever for a sequel to ‘Doctor Strange’ speaks to the power of what Marvel Studios has done, not just theatrically but with the interconnected storytelling they have built on Disney+ over the past year,” Disney’s distribution chief Tony Chambers told TheWrap.