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With the film connecting with audiences of all demographics and strong word-of-mouth continuing to spread, Black Panther should continue to be a "must see" event throughout the month of March, possibly longer.

The 18th release in the Marvel Cinematic Universe opened atop the North American box office with a stratospheric $242.2 million take over the four-day President's Day weekend, said box office monitor Exhibitor Relations.

That's one of the smallest declines ever for a superhero title, as well as one of the smallest for a film launching north of $200 million (the bigger the opening, the bigger the drop in many instances).

The Force Awakens remains the champ in terms of biggest second weekend domestically with $149.2 million, not accounting for inflation.

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Marvel Studios' Black Panther rules at the box office, adding yet another feather to Marvel's glorious hat. It seems to be just a matter of time before the film surpasses the $1 billion mark. "The Force Awakens" ($8 days), got there faster. If the movie surpasses $413 million, which doesn't look hard at this point, Black Panther will rub shoulders with The Dark Knight Rises ($448 million), Avengers: Age of Ultron ($458 million), The Dark Knight ($534 million) and The Avengers ($623 million), Forbes reports. It brought in $108 million this weekend to also become the second biggest all-time movie for the mentioned period. ("The Avengers" occupies the top spot, with $623 million).

The culture knew Black Panther was going to be special, and now we have the receipts.

Paramount's science fiction horror film "Annihilation" opened in fourth place with an estimated USD11 million. In Ryan Coogler's box-office smash, T'Chaka (who died in Captain America: Civil War) was seen in flashbacks wearing a more streamlined version of the suit similar to Chadwick Boseman's, but as per Park's images on Twitter, initially he proposed an option that was more decorative and comics-faithful. That would leave the offerings of Wakanda to only deal with the two Avengers installments, with the first one having set a high marker at more than $600 million. Rounding out the top five was Universal's "Fifty Shades Freed", the third and final installment of the trilogy based on E.L. James' books and starring Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson, which bagged an estimated $6.9 million.