Captain America: The Winter Soldier has far exceeded opening weekend box office expectations by pulling off the awesome feat of becoming the biggest April movie of all time. The blockbuster sequel outstripped the sales of its predecessor, Captain America: The First Avenger, by 47% with $96.2 million taken domestically and over $300 million worldwide during its weekend debut, according to Box Office Mojo.

Captain America Chris Evans
Chris Evans Reprises His Role As The Titular Hero In Marvel's Stunningly Successful Sequel.

Chris Evans reprises his role as Steve Rogers and his titular superhero alter-ego in the Marvel/Disney sequel. Having been forcibly enlisted in the superhero group S.H.I.E.L.D., he is tasked with battling a new and formidable foe, The Winter Soldier, alongside Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow.

Watch The 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' Trailer:

The superhero flick quickly shoved aside the previous April record of $86 million set by 2011's Fast Five and strove to disprove the idea that blockbusters should wait for a summer release to capitalise on holiday audiences. By Friday, it was clear that The Winter Soldier was set for a big opening, with the day's domestic takings totalling $37 million.

Check out our snaps from the 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' London premiere.

Dave Hollis, head of worldwide theatrical distribution for Disney, has said that releasing the movie early as opposed to saving it for the summer was a deliberate choice. "We looked at the possibility of creating separation from the other summer tentpoles," he said, via The Daily Mail. He seemed to be referencing Guardians of the Galaxy, the second Marvel ensemble film which is to have a late summer 2014 release.

Scarlett Johansson Captain America 2
Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow Is Back To Kick Some Winter Soldier Butt In The 'Captain America' Sequel.

Meanwhile, last week's number one box office smash and big budget biblical epic, Noah, was relegated to second place with $17 million and the previous week's champion, the teen sci-fi Divergent, settled for third best with $13 million. Captain America: The Winter Soldier is showing in cinemas in the UK and USA now.

More: Wanna know how those awesome 'Captain America' helicarriers were made? See here.

More: A Black Widow spin-off? "I want to see it," says Scarlett Johansson.

Hear Scarlett Johansson & Chris Evans Talk About 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' At Comic-Con: