Judging by the record ticket sales of "The Avengers," the summer movie season is already shaping up to be a hot one.
"The Avengers" set the bar high its opening weekend. The film grossed over $200 million, shattering the previous record held by "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2." It has remained atop the box office the last three weeks, sinking "Battleship," which opened this past weekend a distant second, as well as other newcomers, including Sacha Baron Cohen's comedy "The Dictator," the ensemble pregnancy tale "What to Expect When You're Expecting" and Tim Burton's "Dark Shadows."
Hollywood.com's Paul Dergarabedian said the success of "The Avengers" is both good and bad for the box office.
"When the season started, I thought this is going to be the biggest summer ever," he told ABCNews.com. "But the failure of the newcomers since 'The Avengers' to ignite at the box office has me a little worried. One movie does not a record summer make."
Dergarabedian is still optimistic that this summer could surpass last year's $4.4 billion take, especially given that some of the year's most anticipated films -- "The Amazing Spider-Man" and "The Dark Knight Rises" -- are still ahead. It's almost certain that Will Smith and his "Men in Black 3" will take over the No. 1 spot by the end of this holiday weekend.
Then, there are the summer sleepers, the small-budget, independent films, like "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," that can do well by catering to an audience uninterested in the Hollywood blockbusters. "Moonrise Kingdom," Wes Anderson's first live-action film since 2007's "Darjeeling Limited," the Chris Pine film "People Like Us" and Woody Allen's latest offering, "To Rome with Love" are three of the season's most anticipated indies.
Here are 10 films to see this summer:
|Men in Black 3|
Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones are back in black as Agent J and Agent K, respectively. For this third round, J will travel back to 1969, teaming up with a young K, played by Josh Brolin, to free the world of those slimy aliens. Opens May 25.
|Snow White and the Huntsman|
Hollywood's latest offering of fairy tales for adults, "Snow White and the Huntsman" stars Charlize Theron as the evil Queen Ravenna, who enlists the help of a huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) to track down the fair Snow White, played by Kristen Stewart. In a twist on the classic, Snow White suits up to fight her own battles. Opens June 1.
One of the most buzzed-about films, "Prometheus" is the fourth installment in Ridley Scott's "Alien" franchise. A whole new crew, led by Hollywood "It" guy Michael Fassbender, who is joined by Idris Elba and Charlize Theron, is sent on a mission to find the origins of mankind but instead discovers something far deadlier. Opens June 8.
|Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted|
The gang is back. Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Gloria the Hippo, and Melman the Giraffe -- voiced by Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, Jada Pinkett-Smith and David Schwimmer -- are still fighting to return to their beloved home in a New York Zoo. They'll have to go through Europe and Frances McDormand, under the guise of a traveling circus, to get there. Opens June 8.
|Rock of Ages|
It's Tom Cruise as we've never seen him before, tattooed, toned and carrying a tune as a 1980s glam rock star in "Rock of Ages," the movie adaption of the hit Broadway musical. It also stars a singing Alec Baldwin and Julianne Hough, Russell Brand and Catherine Zeta-Jones, and it's by Adam Shankman, the same guy who directed a cross-dressing John Travolta in 2007's "Hairspray." Opens June 15.
|The Amazing Spider-Man|
The big screen promises to be hotter than July with the July opening of "The Amazing Spider-Man," the much-awaited reboot starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone, who are linked off-screen as well. Audiences will be looking to see how Garfield's Spidey stacks up to the Tobey Maguire's. Opens July 3.
Oliver Stone's latest film takes on Don Winslow's bestselling novel about two marijuana growers and their girlfriend, played by the lovely Blake Lively, who find themselves targeted by ruthless members of a Mexican drug cartel led by Salma Hayek and her enforcer Benicio Del Toro. Dark, violent and sure to be savage, "Savages" harkens back to Stone's "Natural Born Killers." It also co-stars John Travolta and Uma Thurman. Opens July 6.
|The Dark Knight Rises|
July keeps on rolling with one of the year's most anticipated releases, "The Dark Knight Rises." In this final installment of Christopher Nolan's highly successful trilogy, Christian Bale returns, along with Michael Caine and Gary Oldman, as Batman squares off against the stealthy Catwoman, played by a sleek Anne Hathaway. Opens July 20.
|Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days|
By August, parents will be looking for another movie to enjoy with their kids. The "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" franchise is always a good bet. In this third installment, Greg is back and ready for summer, when all his plans go south. Opens Aug. 3.
Whitney Houston's last film is guaranteed to draw crowds. In this remake of the 1976 original, "American Idol" winner Jordin Sparks plays Houston's musical prodigy daughter who, along with her two sisters, form a girl group that becomes a Motown sensation. But fame threatens to tear the family apart.