Marvel Studios' superheroes continued to conjure super-size box office revenues as Avengers: Age of Ultron raked in $201.1m (£132.5m) around the world, almost eating up its entire $205m production budget.
The sequel to The Avengers - the third-highest grossing film of all time - smashed its way to the top of the box office charts in all of the 44 countries it opened in on the weekend, with its entrance into the US market still to come this week.
In the UK, the movie made $27.3m, making it the highest opening of the year so far and the biggest of any superhero film in British box office history.
According to Variety, co-producers Disney had only anticipated a foreign debut of between $160m and $175m however Age of Ultron beat expectations and the international opening weekend of $185m set by the first Avengers film by 44 per cent.
Age of Ultron, which sees an all-star cast featuring Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Hemsworth reprising their roles as Iron Man and Thor, is now well on course to top the total earned by its predecessor, even with a strengthening dollar hitting Hollywood's revenues from international markets.
Furthermore, the movie will almost certainly take Marvel's total box office gross past the $3bn mark; since moving into the movie business Marvel's films have generated $2.95bn.
Disney's chief of distribution Dave Hollis said:
The bar was high, but this is a sign of unbelievable momentum in the marketplace. It all goes back to the strength of the brand and the incredible work the Marvel team does in telling stories in such a consistent way and creating these worlds.