A mere 2 ½ weeks after CraveOnline reported that The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, part 1 surpassed Guardians of the Galaxy as the highest-grossing domestic film of the year, Variety and BoxOffice.com are reporting that Clint Eastwood’s Oscar-nominated war drama American Sniper is projected to surpass them both, having already surpassed Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and may eventually net upwards of $360 million to $365 million in toto. American Sniper has been remaining quietly triumphant at the box office for weeks, experiencing only the slightest of dropoffs, currently earning it over $280 million. This coming weekend, it is expected to surpass the 300 mark.
What does this mean? If the R-rated American Sniper does become the biggest earner of the year over YA adaptations and Marvel movies, then we will perhaps see a greater push from studios for more Oscar-like biographies, war stories, and films that seem to cater to both left- and right-wing politicos. Even more than the sci-fi and fantasy spectaculars of the day, American Sniper is an unexpected phenomenon. Even upcoming competition like 50 Shades of Grey and Kingsman: The Secret Service don’t seem like the kinds of films that could distract Sniper‘s current audience. Hollywood loves to try to imitate success, and if a movie like this is such a huge hit, we may be witnessing a new vanguard of hit movies for adults.
American Sniper has been nominated for 6 Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Actor.