The out of this world success of 'Avatar' continues.

The James Cameron sci-fi fantasy has taken in $1.14 billion around the world as of Wednesday, according to a report in The Hollywood Reporter, meaning that it has now passed the $1.12 billion draw of 2003's 'The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King' to become the second-highest worldwide grosser ever.

The 'Avatar' totals breaks down to $374.4 million domestically and $760.8 million overseas so far. The out of this world success of 'Avatar' continues.

The James Cameron sci-fi fantasy has taken in $1.14 billion around the world as of Wednesday, according to a report in The Hollywood Reporter, meaning that it has now passed the $1.12 billion draw of 2003's 'The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King' to become the second-highest worldwide grosser ever.

The 'Avatar' totals breaks down to $374.4 million domestically and $760.8 million overseas so far.

Sure, we knew 'Avatar' would pass 'Return of the King' eventually, but the quickness with which it did so has surprised even experts. On Tuesday, the film leap-frogged past 'Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest' and 'The Dark Knight' to land the No. 3 spot on the all-time list, and wasn't expected to hit No. 2 for at least another week. So much for expectations.

'Titanic,' Cameron last feature film, has been the top all-time worldwide grosser with a $1.84 billion tally since it wooed moviegoers back in 1997-98. Up next domestically for 'Avatar' is 'Star Wars: Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith,' with a $380.3 total in 2005. The Star Wars prequel is No. 10 on the domestic list.

It was not supposed to happen this fast for Avatar. Some had pointed to the film's length (162 minutes), lack of screens for its 3-D format, the film being sci-fi (not so good for couples) and clumsy political message contained therein as a drag on its sails. Also, reviews, while praising the visual aspects of 'Avatar,' where decidedly lukewarm on the story.

But, like the resilient Na'vi, the film has a box office tenacity that can not be denied.

Watch the 'Avatar' trailer:


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Can 'Avatar' overtake 'Titanic' as the top worldwide grosser?
Yep, there's magic in the trees of Pandora 404 (83.1%)
No, 'Avatar' will hit its iceberg soon enough82 (16.9%)