While Monsters University started the week as the number 1 film in the US, it was usurped by another animated film this weekend, as Illumination's Despicable Me 2 took the top spot. The film, which had already been playing in foreign territories, including the UK, opened at #1, with an estimated $82.5 million haul over the weekend. That's impressively about on par with Pixar's mammoth hit, Monsters University. Factor into that the fact that Despicable Me 2 was made for allegedly about $200 million less than Monsters U, and this is a very good result for Illumination's parent company, Universal.
The original Despicable Me opened to a $56.4 million opening weekend, so figures are way up the second time round. Over five days, the minion-packed sequel has taken a massive $142.1 million. To put this into perspective, that's a higher five-day gross than Toy Story 3! The original took $543 million worldwide, so things are certainly looking impressive for 2 in the long run; it's currently sitting on about $293 million worldwide and is the #1 film in the UK right now too.
Word of mouth is definitely on Despicable Me 2's side, with an average CinemaScore of "A" - in fact, we here at A113Animation happen to think it's "easily the best animated film of 2013 so far, and in fact the funniest film of the summer." Although how true that will remain after I've seen Monsters University, I don't know.
Meanwhile, The Lone Ranger is floundering, and the film that Disney clearly hoped would be the next Pirates of the Caribbean took only $48.9 across its first five days, compared to a budget of over $200 million. Monsters U is holding on in fourth place at the US Box Office (behind DM2, The Lone Ranger and The Heat), dropping 57%; it's worldwide total so far, ahead of opening in the UK and France this coming week, is just over $400 million.
Via Box Office Mojo