The Marvels and every MCU movie ranked by box office

Kayla Harrington
A poster for the MCU filmsMarvel

Following the release of The Marvels, we’ve ranked every MCU movie in the franchise from worst to best – according to their box office returns.

When it comes to Marvel Studios and their films, the box office earnings can be anywhere from the tens of millions to billions of dollars.

Going back to the first MCU movie — Iron Man — in 2008, the studio has seen a fluctuation when it comes to what their movies earn, for better or for worse.

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So, as they just released their latest team up film — The Marvels — we ranked every MCU movie by their box office earnings from worst to best.

32. The Marvels (2023)

Worldwide box office: $116 million (currently)

The latest of the MCU’s team up movie, The Marvels‘ box office suffered from a unique issue: the actors’ strike. With the SAG-AFTRA strike, the stars of the film were not able to promote the film, a staple with other Marvel movies. However, with a new deal struck, any promotion involving its ensemble could boost its box office earnings in the upcoming weeks.

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You can read our piece exploring why The Marvels has flopped here.

31. The Incredible Hulk (2008)

Worldwide box office: $264.7 million

Commonly regarded as one of the worst MCU movies of all time, The Incredible Hulk was once considered one of the lowest-grossing films of the series. Edward Norton (Hulk) disagreed with Marvel over the final edit of the film and was replaced with Mark Ruffalo in The Avengers.

30. Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

Worldwide box office: $370.6 million

Coming just three years after the first Iron Man, it’s not surprising that Captain America‘s first movie didn’t do as well in theaters, as the public still wasn’t completely sold on the idea of the MCU as a whole, but praised Chris Evans for his portrayal of the star-spangled hero.

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29. Black Widow (2021)

Worldwide box office: $379.6 million

Black Widow was another victim of circumstance as it premiered after Avengers: Endgame, and it had to deal with the global shutdown as it originally was supposed to premiere in May 2020.

28. Eternals (2021)

Worldwide box office: $402.06 million

Eternals is also considered one of the worst MCU movies (it’s the second-lowest on Rotten Tomatoes) but it’s actually one of the most creative entries within the universe.

Eternals also saw an ever changing amount of premiere dates as it originally was supposed to come out on November 6, 2020, but couldn’t due to the global shutdown. And then its premiere date changed to February 12, 2021 and then November 5, 2021, its actual premiere date.

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27. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021)

Worldwide box office: $432.2 million

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings was saved at the box office as it narrowly escaped the global shutdown box office curse and was praised for the exploration and representation of Asian culture – which was something not really shown in the MCU before.

26. Thor (2011)

Worldwide box office: $449.3 million

The success of Thor is quite remarkable as Sam Raimi first developed the idea of the film adaptation based on the 1991 film Thor, but quickly abandoned the project, so it lived in development hell for several years until Marvel Studios picked it up.

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25. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (2023)

Worldwide box office: $474.5 million

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania first started production during the global shutdown and is regarded as one of the MCU’s biggest flops after Endgame, as it struggled to make up for its $200 million budget during its first few opening weeks.

24. Ant-Man (2015)

Worldwide box office: $519.3 million

Ant-Man was greatly praised for its “smaller stakes” as the movie was an introduction to petty thief Scott Lang and the lengths he would go through for his family.

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23. Iron Man (2008)

Worldwide box office: $585.8 million

Known as the kick off the MCU, Iron Man was absolutely loved by critics who went out of their way to praise Robert Downey’s performance and Jon Favreau’s direction, visual effects, action sequences, and writing.

22. Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018)

Worldwide box office: $622.7 million

Ant-Man and the Wasp did make up its $130–195 million dollar budget, but wasn’t a huge success with fans as it sits at a 80% on Rotten Tomatoes, which is lower than the original movie’s score.

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21. Iron Man 2 (2010)

Worldwide box office: $623.9 million

Despite its box office success, Iron Man 2 is argued to be one of the worst MCU movies of all time as a lot of fans and critics think its incredibly overstuffed with plot and trying to do too much with its villains and setting up the Avengers.

20. Thor: The Dark World (2013)

Worldwide box office: $644.8 million

In what is said to be the third worst MCU movie of all time, Thor: The Dark World didn’t leave fans wanting more as it seemed like the characters were miswritten and the villain was incredibly dull.

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19. Doctor Strange (2016)

Worldwide box office: $677.8 million

Doctor Strange was highly praised for its cast, visual effects, and musical score, and even managed to grab a nomination for Best Visual Effects at the Oscars the year following its release.

18. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Worldwide box office: $714.4 million

Captain America: The Winter Soldier is regarded by critics as one of the best MCU movies of all time and even one of the best superhero films ever made. The movie was nominated for Best Visual Effects at the Oscars.

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17. Thor: Love and Thunder (2022)

Worldwide box office: $760.9 million

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Thor: Love and Thunder seemed to be a box office success, but received mixed reviews from critics, who praised the film for its light-heartedness, action sequences, and the performances of Chris Hemsworth, Christian Bale, and Natalie Portman, but disliked the screenplay and inconsistencies with the movie’s tone.

16. Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

Worldwide box office: $773.4 million

Guardians of the Galaxy was absolutely wrote off for being a weird entry in the MCU, but it went on to be a huge success as it became the third-highest-grossing film of 2014 and was nominated for Best Makeup and Hairstyling and Best Visual Effects at the Oscars.

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15. Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

Worldwide box office: $854 million

Thor: Ragnarok reinvigorated the Thor franchise thanks to the directorial work of Taika Waititi and went on to become the highest-grossing film of the series.

14. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022)

Worldwide box office: $859.2 million

The sequel to one of the biggest MCU movies of all time, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was praised for its handling of Chadwick Boseman’s tragic passing and went on to be nominated for five Oscars including Best Supporting Actress (Angela Bassett) and Best Original Song (Tems and Rihanna).

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13. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)

Worldwide box office: $863.8 million

The second entry of the Guardians franchise — Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 — was criticized for being inferior to its predecessor, but went on to be nominated for Best Visual Effects at the Oscars.

12. Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)

Worldwide box office: $880.2 million

Spider-Man: Homecoming was Tom Holland’s first outing as Spider-Man and quickly became the second-most-successful Spider-Man film and the sixth-highest-grossing film of 2017. 

11. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022)

Worldwide box office: $955.8 million

The sequel to the 2016 film, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness began production in November 2020, but was put on hold due to the global shutdown. But, the film managed to make up its budget of $294.5 million and become the fourth-highest-grossing film of 2022.

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10. Captain Marvel (2019)

Worldwide box office: $1.128 billion

Captain Marvel’s box office earnings landed it in the fifth-highest-grossing film of 2019 and the 23rd-highest-grossing film of all time during its theatrical run. To this day, it’s the first female-led superhero film to pass the billion-dollar mark.

9. Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)

Worldwide box office: $1.13 billion

The second of Holland’s Spider-Man film, Spider-Man: Far From Home, cemented itself as the first Spider-Man film to pass the billion-dollar mark, the fourth-highest-grossing film of 2019, Sony Pictures’ highest-grossing film (until later), and the 24th highest-grossing film of all time. 

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8. Captain America: Civil War (2016)

Worldwide box office: $1.15 billion

One of the only non-Avengers team up films, Captain America: Civil War became the highest-grossing film of 2016 and helped set up the eventual Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes spin-off series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

7. Iron Man 3 (2013)

Worldwide box office: $1.2 billion

The last entry of the trilogy, Iron Man 3 was the second-highest-grossing film of 2013 and nominated for Best Visual Effects at the Oscars and BAFTA Awards, but it was highly criticized for the handling of its primary villain the Mandarin.

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6. Black Panther (2018)

Worldwide box office: $1.3 billion

Black Panther is the first outing of Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa, Wakanda’s prince and protector, and was nominated for several Oscars including Best Picture, Best Original Score, and Best Costume Desgin.

5. Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

Worldwide box office: $1.4 billion

The second entry in the Avengers franchise, Avengers: Age of Ultron is known as one of the most expensive films ever made with a budget of $444–495.2 million, but it also cruised past $1 billion at thje box office to become the fourth-highest-grossing film of 2015.

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4. The Avengers (2012)

Worldwide box office: $1.5 billion

The first of the franchise, The Avengers was nominated/received a ton of awards during its theatrical release including nine Teen Choice Awards, five MTV Movie Awards, and nine People’s Choice Awards. The Avengers also became the highest-grossing film of 2012 and the first Marvel project to generate $1 billion at the box office.

3. Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)

Worldwide box office: $1.9 billion

The last of Holland’s outings as Spider-Man, Spider-Man: No Way Home surpassed its predecessor as the highest-grossing film released by Sony Pictures and received a nomination for Best Visual Effects at the Oscars.

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2. Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

Worldwide box office: $2.05 billion

The first of the Infinity Saga finale films, Avengers: Infinity War became the first superhero film to gross over $2 billion worldwide and was nominated for Best Visual Effects at the Oscars.

1. Avengers: Endgame (2019)

Worldwide box office: $2.8 billion

The conclusion to the Infinity Saga films, Avengers: Endgame overtook Infinity War’s entire theatrical box office run in just 11 days and was a critical darling as many of the major players (Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson) were praised for their final portrayal of their iconic characters.

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It even briefly outgrossed Avatar – until James Cameron re-released the blockbuster and took back the crown.

You can check out our list of the top 50 highest-grossing movies of all time here. To check out more of Dexerto’s TV and movie coverage, click here.

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About The Author

Kayla is a TV and Movies Writer at Dexerto. She's huge fan of Marvel (especially if Wanda Maximoff is involved), shows that make you laugh then cry, and any cooking show found on the Food Network. Before Dexerto, she wrote for Mashable, BuzzFeed, and The Mary Sue. You can contact her at kayla.harrington@dexerto.com