In less than 48 hours, the fate of the universe will be decided as the Disney-Marvel juggernaut ‘Avengers: Endgame’ unravels the final battle between our band of Marvel superheroes and Thanos.
Arguably the most anticipated film event of the year, the fan frenzy in the UAE has already reached fever pitch with both, Vox Cinemas and Reel Cinemas, running 24-hour screenings from April 24 until April 26 across all theatres.
Several early morning 3am showings are already running to packed houses, including ones at Novo Cinemas, while evening shows on April 24 are the golden ticket — if you’re lucky, you have a few booked under your name.
“While earlier ‘Avengers’ and films such as ‘Black Panther’ have gained strong advance bookings, the interest of fans for’ Avengers: Endgame’ is nothing short of phenomenal,” said a spokesperson from Reel Cinemas.
As the 22nd film in the current Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), ‘Avengers: Endgame’ is expecting a record opening in the UAE, with industry estimates closing in on 100,000 in pre-ticket sales ahead of its release.
To put the numbers into perspective, a reliable industry source in the UAE compared the box office pre-ticket sales of two of the biggest films in the region — ‘Fast and Furious 7’ and ‘Avengers: Infinity War’.
“Normally, up to the date of a film’s release, advance ticket sales of a Hollywood film average between 10-15,000 tickets. Meanwhile, ‘Infinity War’ set a record in 2018 with 82,000 in advance sales. In comparison, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ has already broken all records with the number expected to reach 100,000,” they stated.
According to the source, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ will be releasing across 200 plus screens across the UAE, with Vox Cinemas hosting exclusive premieres of the genre film on April 23 in Kuwait, Beirut, Muscat, Jeddah, Bahrain and, of course, Dubai.
The premiere at Mall of the Emirates will include special activations such as a Stan Lee dedication wall where fans can leave messages and a giant Avengers case file. As well as a photo booth, themed food and an Avengers farewell party at Brunswick.
On April 23, Novo Cinemas, MoE and City Centre Mirdif will also screen a double feature of ‘Infinity War’ in IMAX, starting at midnight, followed by ‘Avengers: Endgame’ at 3am.
The predictions are already in with box-office tracker Exhibitor Relations closing in on a record-breaking opening of $282 million in North American ticket sales for ‘Avengers: Endgame’. Its predecessor set a record of $258m on its opening weekend.
Elsewhere, Boxoffice.com is projecting a $695m domestic and around $2 billion worldwide box office bounty. ‘Infinity War’ finished its run with $679m and $2.04bn, respectively, according to Box Office Mojo.
“The fact that Ramadan follows a couple of weeks later with a limited release of films at the UAE box office will only help the final tally of ‘Endgame’,” the industry source added.
SOCIAL MEDIA BLACKOUT
While Marvel geeks eagerly await the return of Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and the gang to save the universe post snap, director duo, the Russo Brothers, and their most ardent fans have just one message for party poopers: Thanos demands your silence.
Several users are resorting to a social media blackout ahead of the film’s release following a five-minute leak that made its way to Twitter and Reddit. The leak also promoted the makers to issue a statement requesting fans to maintain silence, sparking the official hashtag, #DontSpoilTheEndgame.
Although, threads discussing the leak in detail have already sprung up on Reddit and Twitter, users are muting key words and phrases to avoid being exposed to spoilers ahead of the release.
Earlier, UAE resident and self-confessed Marvel fan Anthony Permal told Gulf News tabloid! he’s cut down his average time spent on social media from five hours to half of that to avoid being dealt spoilers ahead of the release.
“It has been very difficult considering my job as a digital marketer requires me to be on social media, which is why I have stopped using my personal account and am limiting my usage to just work,” Permal said. “I have also muted every word I could think of that could be used by someone looking to spoil the fun for the rest of us.”
Dubai-based IT Manager Nikhil Stephen has already booked himself in for a 3am screening on April 24 to get ahead of the spoilers that he believes are bound to pop up on his social media timeline.
“I wanted to get ahead of the game and avoid spoilers primarily, but I am also interested to see how it all comes together after 21 films,” he said. “I have never really done a 3am show, so I am curious how I will manage to get through it.”
As fans count down to the biggest movie event from MCU, the experience, no doubt, will be an emotional one among its most ardent followers.
“It almost feels like we’re losing a friend or a close loved one,” wrote one Twitter user.
Going by the retweets on that post, many agree.
Don’t miss it!
‘Avengers: Endgame’ releases across the UAE on April 24 at 3am.