Frozen II surpasses original to become biggest animated film

Frozen II generated US$11.3 million in ticket sales domestically to help reach a global gross of US$1.33 billion.
Frozen II generated US$11.3 million in ticket sales domestically to help reach a global gross of US$1.33 billion.PHOTO: AP

LOS ANGELES (BLOOMBERG) - "Frozen II" surpassed sales of its predecessor "Frozen" in its seventh week of release, becoming the highest-grossing animated film ever, while "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker" was this weekend's top draw, extending Walt Disney's box-office dominance into 2020 after a stellar 2019.

"The Rise of Skywalker" brought in US$33.7 million this weekend in US and Canadian theaters, researcher Comscore estimated Sunday (Jan 5), while "Frozen II" generated US$11.3 million in ticket sales domestically to help reach a global gross of US$1.33 billion.

That puts the sequel ahead of the original film's US$1.28 billion global gross, Comscore reported.

Overall ticket sales this weekend are expected to rise compared with the same weekend last year, according to an estimate from Box Office Pro.

But the domestic 2020 box office overall may slide for a second year in a row.

In 2019, ticket sales declined by almost US$500 million to about US$11.4 billion, according to data from Comscore.

This weekend usually lacks new releases, as studios ride the wave of the busy holiday movie-going period.

However, Sony Corp released a big horror-franchise film, "The Grudge," a remake of a 2002 Japanese movie about a house cursed by a vengeful ghost.

It grossed US$11.3 million in its opening weekend, Comscore estimated. Box Office Pro had projected US$8.5 million in its first three days of wide release.

Two other Sony films - "Jumanji: The Next Level" and Little Women" - placed second and third at the box office.