‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3′ opens at $118 million in domestic box office

Credit: Courtesy of Marvel Studios

Credit: Courtesy of Marvel Studios

The sequel was shot in metro Atlanta like the second one.

“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3″ opened solid this past weekend with a $118 million domestic box office gross.

The film, shot in metro Atlanta with Trilith Studios as home base in Fayetteville, fell short of the 2017 sequel in its opening numbers but exceeded the 2014 original as well as early box office projections.

About 8 million moviegoers in North America saw the movie in its opening weekend.

Like the first two movies, this one received an “A” grade from a sampling of theater attendees polled by CinemaScore. Critics also generally liked the movie with an 81% positive Rotten Tomatoes score compared to 85% the first sequel and 92% for the original.

It’s already the seventh biggest movie of 2023 in just one weekend. “Guardians” joins “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” and “Creed III” as three of the top 10 biggest movies of 2023 that were shot, at least in part, in Georgia.

Deadline said Disney spent twice as much money on marketing this film as the previous two films combined, working with the likes of McDonald’s, King’s Hawaiian, General Mills, Enterprise, Microsoft, Realtor.com and Cisco.

There have been signs of Marvel Cinematic Universe fatigue with some recent movies like “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” not quite reaching the critical or box office heights of past films. But Barry Levitt of The Daily Beast said this particular “Guardians” hit its mark in part due to the appeal of its super villain the High Evolutionary, played by Chukwudi Iwuji, who Levitt describes as having “compelling, intimidating, Shakespearean heft to him.”