Disney (NYSE:DIS) continues to dominate the box office this year as Jon Favreau’s The Lion King opened to a record-breaking $185-M at the North American box office at the weekend for an early global total of $531-M.
The movie scored the biggest domestic open ever for a PG film, and the 9th-biggest for any movie, and posted a record for a Disney release outside of Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm.
Overseas, The Lion King earned a mighty $269.4-M at the weekend from 52 markets. It came in #1 everywhere and made a particularly strong showing in Russia, Australia and the entire Latin America region.
The overall foreign total of $346-M includes $97.5-M from China, where it debuted early last weekend.
Employing groundbreaking photo-realistic CG and featuring a star-studded voice cast, The Lion Kingis another win for Disney’s aggressive campaign to re-imagine its animated classics and a career-best start for Mr. Favreau.
The Summer box office needed a boost.
As of Friday, Y 2019 revenue was running behind last year by 9%. Through Sunday, the gap narrowed to 7%
The Lion King garnered glowing exit scores and an ethnically diverse audience. Ticket buyers disregarded lukewarm reviews, awarding the film an A CinemaScore.
The film skewed female by as much as 60%. The demo mix was 44% Caucasian, 22% African-American, 20% Hispanic and 14% Asian/Other, according to PostTrak.
Sony and Marvel Studios’ Spider-Man: Far From Home came in #2 in its 3rd weekend with $21-M toward $1-M globally.
Pixar and Disney’s Toy Story 4 took 3rd place in its 5th weekend for a take $859.4-M globally so far.
Paramount’s disaster-horror pic Crawl made gained in its 2nd weekend coming in 4th domestically for a global take of $33.7-V Vs a $13-M production budget.
Working Title and Universal’s Yesterday rounded out the Top 5 for a global take of $98.2-M The film is the only adult-skewing title to work on a nationwide basis this Summer.
At the specialty box office
Lulu Wang’s The Farewell, the critically acclaimed dramedy that has a 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. The A24 release grossed $1.2-M from 35 locations in its 2nd weekend for a location average of $33,084.
Several new documentaries debuted
Sony Pictures Classics’ David Crosby: Remember My Name, which grossed $41,050 from 4 theaters for a promising location average of $10,263.
Neon made a Apollo 11, timed to Saturday’s 50th anni of the Moon landing. The doc grossed a domestic total of $9-M, the best showing of the year so far for a doc.
Have some fun, see a movie this week.