After years of being overshadowed by Disney’s other animation house, Pixar, Walt Disney Animation Studios has finally stepped up with stories that are both moneymakers and high in quality and concept.
Now their latest, “Zootopia,” is a record-breaker for the studio at the box office.
The movie, following a bunny cop as she tries to solve a mystery with the help of a fox, was a hit with audiences over the weekend as it took the top spot at the box office with an estimated $73.7 million, according to pro.boxoffice.com. That’s the biggest opening ever for a non-Pixar Disney animated film.
Yes, that’s even more than the opening of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ monster hit, “Frozen,” which opened with $67.4 million its first day of wide release.
The success of “Zootopia” was led by stellar reviews (it has a 98% rating on Rotten Tomatoes) that pushed home the notion that the movie was entertaining for both kids and adults.
The movie started off with a very strong Thursday evening preview showing, taking in $1.7 million, the biggest Thursday-night opening for a non-summer Disney animated movie. Then it took in an impressive $19.5 million on Friday.
It’s looking like 2016 will be another strong year for Disney, which has a string of anticipated movies coming out, from Pixar’s “Finding Dory” to Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War,” and, of course, “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” at the end of the year.
“Zootopia” finally dethroned box office champ “Deadpool,” which came in third with an estimated $16.4 million (over $311 million domestically, to date).
And in second was “London Has Fallen” with an estimated $21.7 million. Though only with a 26% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, the movie performed to distributor Millennium Films’ opening weekend projections.
That means don’t be surprised if Gerard Butler returns once again to play a secret service agent who seems to be awful at his job.
The new release this weekend that performed the worst was Tina Fey’s new comedy “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,” which only took in $7.6 million on over 2,300 screens.
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