"Black Panther" director Ryan Coogler has written an online letter thanking audiences for turning out to watch his superhero film during its first few days of release.
The Marvel Studios movie has broken several box office records since its U.S. release last Friday. It earned around $242 million over the President's Day weekend — the second highest four-day haul in domestic movie history, according to Marvel.
On a global basis, "Black Panther" has already grossed more than $426.75 million worldwide, according to Box Office Mojo; with the box office database adding that it's one of only five films to pass $200 million in its first three days of release.
In his open letter, published on Marvel Studios' social media platforms, Coogler wrote: "For the people who bought out theaters, who posted on social about how lit the film would be, bragged about our awesome cast, picked out outfits to wear, and who stood in line in theaters all over the world — all before seeing the film."
He added that he was "struggling to find the words to express" his gratitude.
"Never in a million years did we imagine that you all would come out this strong. It still humbles me to think that people care enough to spend their money and time watching our film."
"To see people of all backgrounds wearing clothing that celebrates their heritage, taking pictures next to our posters with their friends and family, and sometimes dancing in the lobbies of theaters — often moved me and my wife to tears," Coogler wrote.
"Black Panther" is the first Marvel movie that features a predominantly black cast, with a narrative that's infused by African culture. The film stars Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa, who is the protector and King of Wakanda, a fictional advanced nation.
Coogler concluded his letter by signing off "P.S. Wakanda Forever."
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