Ryan Coogler pens tribute to one of his heroes Ava DuVernay

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The film's opening in China - the world's second biggest market behind the U.S. - pushed its global total past the $1 billion mark that only 32 other movies have reached.

The Marvel movie raked in $41.1 million this weekend and officially surpassed "The Dark Knight" to become the seventh all-time top domestic earner with a total of $562 million, according to The Wrap.

Lupita Nyong'o and Letitia Wright in "Black Panther", 2018. The Ava DuVernay directed film with the star-studded cast helped to make history at the box office this weekend.

This isn't the first open letter the Creed director has written since the blockbuster release of Black Panther, which is predicted to hit the $1 billion (£722 million) mark.

The movie starring Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Minday Kaling, Chris Pine and newcomer Storm Reid grossed another $6.3 million overseas in six territories, so it still has a lot of room to grow its global audience.

The poorly reviewed movie - Variety says it serves up "the same old meat-puppet gore and cattle-prod scares" - stars Christina Hendricks and Martin Henderson as a couple whose family is attacked by three masked men.

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20th Century Fox's Red Sparrow, starring Jennifer Lawrence and Joel Edgerton, dropped to fourth place with an est.

For its opening weekend, "Panther" earned $202,003,951, giving it the fifth-biggest opening weekend in North America of all time.

The only other newcomer in the top 10, Entertainment Studios' $40 million action thriller "The Hurricane Heist", debuted at No. 8 with $3.1 million, below analysts' predictions of $4 million to $7 million.

It fared slightly better than Nash Edgerton's action-comedy Gringo, starring David Oyelowo, Charlize Theron, Joel Edgerton and Sharlto Copley, which took in just $2.6 million in 2,404 theaters or around $1,000 per theater.

Below, check out the impressive numbers the film has posted so far.

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