‘Toy Story 4’ opened below expectations at the box office, but still shows how Disney is dominating 2019

‘Toy Story 4’ Disney/Pixar
  • “Toy Story 4” is the latest sequel to open below expectations at the box office this year.
  • But it still made an impressive $US118 million domestically, further showing Disney’s domination at the box office.
  • Disney holds the top three spots at the global and domestic box offices so far this year, and has more potential blockbusters on the way.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Disney and Pixar’s “Toy Story 4” opened with $US118 million at the domestic box office over the weekend, but it was below expectations.

Experts projected the sequel to debut between $US140 million and $US170 million. Box Office Mojo anticipated $US165 million, while Boxoffice.com projected a more conservative $US149 million debut. Those would have fallen short of breaking the animated opening-weekend record held by “Incredibles 2,” which opened with a massive $US183 million last year.

Instead, “Toy Story 4” had the third-best premiere for an animated movie, behind “Incredibles 2” and “Finding Dory,” which earned $US135 million in its first weekend in the US.

READ MORE: Even after ‘Avengers: Endgame,’ this year’s box office is down thanks to a bleak summer full of stale sequels

“Toy Story 4” is the latest sequel this summer to fall short of expectations, hinting at possible franchise fatigue among audiences. Boxoffice.com chief analyst Shawn Robbins wrote that the movie “again underlines the enormous uphill battle franchises face after apparently concluding their stories.”

But $US118 million is still an impressive start for an animated movie, especially the fourth in a series. Robbins added that “Toy Story 4” is far from a failure and “will go on to a leggy domestic and global run.” It’s made $US238 million worldwide so far.

And it further represents how Disney is dominating this year like no other studio.

Disney is carrying the box office on its back

Disney owns the top three spots so far this year at the domestic and global box offices, with “Avengers: Endgame,” “Captain Marvel,” and “Aladdin.” And “Toy Story 4” has already cracked the top 10 domestically.

The company seems immune to the woes of this year’s lacklustre box office, which is trailing the record-breaking 2018. Prior to “Toy Story 4,” the 2019 box office was down 6% domestically and 4.7% globally compared to that time last year.

READ MORE: Disney’s movie release shake-up shows how it will dominate Hollywood for years to come, from ‘Avatar’ to ‘Star Wars’

Some notable non-Disney movies have broken through and grabbed audiences’ attention, though.

They include Jordan Peele’s “Us,” his follow-up to 2017’s “Get Out.” “Us” had the biggest opening weekend for an original horror movie ever in March with $US70 million and made $US255 million worldwide off of a $US20 million production budget – what the production company Blumhouse does best.

“How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World” grossed $US520 million worldwide, and “John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum” is the rare sequel this year to top its predecessor with an impressive $US289 million worldwide.

But the rest of the year will likely continue Disney’s domination, as it releases “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” “The Lion King,” and “Frozen 2.”