"Captain America: The Winter Soldier," the sequel to 2011's
"Captain America: The First Avenger," stormed the U.S. and
Canadian box office with $96.2 million in its opening weekend,
setting a record for an April film release.
The films, based on the Marvel comics, star Chris Evans as a
scrawny World War II reject who gains super-powers from an
experimental serum and becomes America's first superhero,
donning a suit of stars and stripes.
The success of "Captain America" follows Disney's long line of
recent hits from the Marvel universe, led by Robert Downey Jr.'s
"Iron Man," Chris Hemsworth's "Thor" and 2012's superhero
ensemble "The Avengers," which became the third-biggest film in
Hollywood history with $1.5 billion at the worldwide box office.
Each film is interconnected with the others, often featuring
crossover characters and stories.
"Captain America 3" will be released on the same scheduled date
as Warner Bros' sequel for 2011's Superman reboot, "Man of
Steel." The yet-to-be titled project will see DC Comics hero
Superman, played by British actor Henry Cavill, face off with
Batman, played by Ben Affleck.
Before "Captain America 3" is released in 2016, the hero will
return in 2015's "Avengers: Age of Ultron."
Shares of Disney were down 1.7 percent at $79.04 in afternoon
(Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy; editing by Eric Kelsey, Lisa Von Ahn and Paul Simao)
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