Box office numbers are a game of expectations, so you’re likely to hear some grumbling that Disney-Pixar’s Toy Story 4 underperformed this weekend, despite the fact that the film grossed an estimated $118 million, ranking it as the fourth-highest animation opening of all-time.
Some of those lofty expectations stemmed from the opening figures of other recent Pixar-quels, namely Incredibles 2, which launched with $182.6M last year, and Finding Dory, which started with $135M in 2016. Disney execs had reportedly hoped for a $140M stateside opening for the Josh Cooley-directed TS4.
Still, even if Toy Story 4 didn’t land exactly where analysts thought it would, it’s hard to label this film as anything but a box office win. The opening is the highest for the Toy Story franchise (second-highest when adjusted for inflation, after 2010’s Toy Story 3). Add in an additional $120 million from overseas, and the global launch of $238M is the highest-ever for an animated film (beating out Incredible 2′s $235.8M global opening).
Also notable, this is the first release in Pixar’s post-Lasseter era. The executive producers on the film were Pete Docter, Andrew Stanton, and Lee Unkrich. The strong debut is a sign that the studio can continue just fine without his input. For those who want to dig deeper into the opening weekend numbers, Deadline has plenty more details on the film’s performance.
Other box office notes:
Disney’s hybrid remake of Aladdin continues to perform beyond expectations. It held the no. 3 spot in its 5th weekend with an est. $12.2M. It has now accrued $287.5M domestic and $522.6M international for an $810.1M global take.
Universal-Illumination’s The Secret Life of Pets 2 has not experienced the same luck. It slipped from no. 2 to no. 5 in only its third weekend, with an est. $10.2M. It has grossed just $117.5M domestic and $77.1M abroad for $194.6M global. It still has a chance to make up ground internationally, as it has yet to open in much of Europe, as well as China and Japan, but it’s safe to say that the film will come nowhere near the original’s $875M global gross. Illumination has been untouchable the last few years, but like every studio that relies heavily on formula-driven approaches to animation, its winning streak may be winding down.