'Barbie' Eclipses $500 Million Worldwide in Just One Week, 'Oppenheimer' Closes In on $300 Million (UPDATE)

The two movies resulted in the fourth-biggest domestic box office weekend in history.

America Ferrera, Margot Robbie, and Ryan Gosling at a "Barbie" premiere
Karwai Tang via Getty Images
America Ferrera, Margot Robbie, and Ryan Gosling at a "Barbie" premiere

UPDATED July 27, 9:50 p.m. ET: The global box office domination of Barbie shows no sign of slowing down. The Margot Robbie-led film has now earned $528.6 million worldwide in just one week, as reported by Deadline.

Barbie is currently sitting in sixth among this year's highest-grossing films domestically, but has a ways to go before knocking The Super Mario Bros. Movie off the top spot. The surprise animated hit raked in $541 million.

Despite being overshadowed by Barbie, the other half of Barbenheimer phenomenon continues to hold its own. Oppenheimer is expected to reach $300 million worldwide by Friday. A less than one percent decline in the global box office, from Wednesday to Thursday, means interest remains pretty high in the Christopher Nolan-directed film.

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Moviegoers flocked to theaters across the country to make "Barbenheimer" weekend the fourth-biggest in domestic box office history.

Per Variety, the Greta Gerwig-directed Barbie set records by bringing in $155 million at the US box office, which makes it the biggest opening weekend ever for a movie directed by a woman. The current worldwide take for the Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling-starring comedy sits at an astonishing $337 million. Produced on a budget of $145 million, it's already the most successful Warner Bros. Pictures release of the year, beating out Creed III and the superhero flop The Flash.

Christopher Nolan's historical biopic Oppenheimer — which opened on the same day — isn't far behind with a debut that is surpassing expectations. The three-hour-long film brought in $80.5 million in its opening weekend, beating out conservative estimates of $50 million. With the addition of the international box office, it's taken in a total of $174 million worldwide so far. Starring Cillian Murphy as the man who led the development of the first nuclear weapons, Oppenheimer had a budget of $100 million and is Nolan's first project for Universal Pictures following his falling out with Warner over the company's decision to put its projects on streaming simultaneously.

"Studios gave audiences two uniquely different, smart, and original stories that were meant for the big screen," said National Association of Theatre Owners President and CEO Michael O'Leary. "People recognized that something special was happening, and they wanted to be a part of it.”

Buoyed by strong reviews for both and the inescapable prevalence of the "Barbenheimer" double-feature hype on social media, it's the strongest weekend at US theaters since the COVID-19 pandemic hit in early 2020. As noted by Imax CEO Rich Gelfond, Oppenheimer has benefitted from its release in premium formats, including IMAX 70mm showings at select locations around the world.

Writer and director Nolan said that he thought it was "terrific" to see Barbie, which couldn't be more different than Oppenheimer, debut in theaters the same time as his new movie. "Summer, in a healthy marketplace, is always crowded, and we've been doing this a long time,” Nolan said. “I think for those of us who care about movies, we've been really waiting to have a crowded marketplace again, and now it's here and that's terrific."

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