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Captain Marvel advance tickets may shatter series record

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ADVANCE-TICKET sales for Walt Disney Co.’s Captain Marvel are off to a strong start, a sign of pent-up demand for the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first film with a female lead.

Since advance tickets went on sale on Jan. 7, Captain Marvel has done brisker business than Deadpool 2, Black Panther, and Venom, according to Atom Tickets. And the movie could eclipse Avengers: Infinity War for total presales, the company said. Fandango, another ticket supplier, said sales ranked among the top three Marvel pictures.

Disney is hoping to duplicate the success of last year’s Black Panther, whose majority-black cast resonated with audiences. This time around, the MCU franchise is breaking different ground. With Brie Larson starring as Captain Marvel, a woman will get top billing for the first time in a series that has spanned 21 films.

Major studios have come under criticism for the lack of diversity in front of and behind the camera. While a recent University of Southern California study showed gains for African-American men, women continue to struggle to get jobs in the entertainment industry. Men accounted for nearly three-quarters of the producers for the top 300 movies released from 2016 to 2018, according to the annual report from the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative. Women of color accounted for just 1.6%.

The recent Golden Globe Awards provided a platform for women to call out those disparities, with winner Regina King vowing to make her production staffs 50% female. — Bloomberg