James Cameron becomes the first director to have three movies make $2 billion at the box office

Avatar: The Way of Water
(Image credit: 20th Century Studios)

Avatar: The Way of Water has hit the $2 billion mark at the global box office. Since it was released on December 16, the movie has made $598 million in the US and $1.4 billion overseas. And, with the film still hitting the big screen around the world, that number will only increase. 

It's only the sixth movie to ever hit the box office milestone, making James Cameron the first director to have three movies cross the mark (unadjusted for inflation). The first Avatar movie made $2.9 billion at the box office since it was released in 2009, making it the highest-grossing film of all time, while Cameron's 1997 drama Titanic made $2.2 billion.

Like Cameron, the Russo brothers also have two movies that grossed over $2 billion, 2018's Avengers: Infinity War ($2.04 billion) and 2019's Avengers: Endgame ($2.7 billion), but Cameron has now bested their joint record thanks to Avatar 2. The only other movie not mentioned already that's hit this mark is Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which was released in 2015 and made $2.06 billion at the box office.

Last year, Cameron told GQ (opens in new tab) that the movie was "very fucking" expensive and "the worst business case in movie history," continuing that in order to be profitable, "you have to be the third or fourth highest-grossing film in history." Currently the sixth-highest-grossing movie of all time, it seems like it's on track.

Avatar: The Way of Water is in theaters now and the next installment in the franchise, Avatar 3, is currently scheduled for release on December 20, 2024. In the meantime, check out our guide to all the best movie release dates in 2023. 

Entertainment Writer

I’m an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering everything film and TV-related across the Total Film and SFX sections. I help bring you all the latest news and also the occasional feature too. I’ve previously written for publications like HuffPost and i-D after getting my NCTJ Diploma in Multimedia Journalism.