Disney Loses Overall Box Office Crown for the First Time in Years

Disney Loses Overall Box Office Crown for the First Time in Years

Disney lost the top spot in the 2023 race to be the highest-grossing movie studio.

Instead, Universal Pictures, which had “The Super Mario Bros. Movie,” “Oppenheimer” and “M3GAN, became the global champion, according to Variety.

Overall, Universal racked up $4.907 billion in global ticket sales. Disney raked in $4.827 billion globally. Disney was quick to note that it produced 17 movies in the year against Universal’s 24 films.

Warner Bros., powered by the hit “Barbie,” was third with $3.84 billion globally. Sony and Paramount were each estimated to land at about $2 billion each.

Universal had $1.94 billion in domestic revenue against $1.9 million for Disney, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Elsewhere around the world, Universal totaled $2.97 billion in ticket sales. Disney’s revenue outside the U.S. was $2.92 billion.

Universal last topped the list in 2015 after which Disney led the parade.

“Universal seems to have found the perfect balance of franchise films, animation, horror and everything in between — and these assets are given every possible advantage with a pitch perfect strategy that combines great filmmaker relationships, fantastic marketing and a rock-solid distribution plan,” Comscore chief box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian said.

Variety noted that Disney had four titles in the top 10 films, but it also did not have one of the top three films, which were “Barbie” from Warner Bros. at $1.4 billion and Universal’s “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” at $1.3 billion and “Oppenheimer” at $950 million.

Other than during the pandemic, 2023 marked the first year since 2014 that no Disney movie grossed more than $1 billion.

Variety pointed out that Disney’s films with a middling box office showing by its standards, which other studios might envy, often end up as financial disasters because Disney movies often have much higher costs.

It noted that although “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” grossed $476 million globally to place 10th, it was a money-loser due to its costs.

The American box office was similar with “Barbie” and “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” at the top, according to BoxOffice Pro.

But the list of the top 10 films at the American box office had a surprise. “Sound of Freedom,” an independent film from Angel Studios, earned $184,177,725, according to Christian Headlines.

The movie made the top 10 by narrowly beating out  “Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour,” which grossed $179,635,196, to finish 11th.


This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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