It turns out they don’t call it the Indominus rex for nothing.
After blowing away expectations with the biggest opening weekend in U.S. history, “Jurassic World” has pulled off another unexpected feat.
Even after dropping 51 percent from weekend to weekend, “Jurassic World's” hybrid T. rex-raptor-cuttlefish still proved a big enough draw to end what was, up until now, an unbroken box-office streak for Pixar, surpassing “Inside Out's” $90.4 million debut by more than $15 million, according to Box Office Mojo, and ending the perfect run of No. 1 hits Pixar had managed to churn out ever since “Toy Story” first took over the box office in 1995.
However, while Pixar may have lost some bragging rights, it’s not nearly as bad as it might sound at first. As mentioned by Forbes, the $90.4 million for “Inside Out” is still the fourth-highest opening weekend box office for an animated film, the second-highest opening for any Pixar film (after “Toy Story 3”) and the biggest ever for any film — animated or otherwise — not based on pre-existing material.
By the same token, the $106 million haul for “Jurassic World” in its second weekend was the largest non-debut weekend ever (beating out $103 million for “The Avengers”). In other words, both films performed remarkably well. The fact that “Jurassic World” has turned out to be as massive a hit as it has — exceeding even the most optimistic projections by tens of millions of dollars (Variety, for instance, reported in May that it was tracking to earn, possibly, as much as $100 million; it ended up earning $208 million) — is just unlucky scheduling for Pixar, but not a sign, as some might be tempted to interpret it, of the studio’s decline.
In fact, “Inside Out” also grossed tens of millions more than estimated. Predictions before it came out had it in the neighborhood of $60 million, according to Business Insider. It’s also garnering rave reviews, so far, and seems, for many, like a return to form for the studio. Pixar’s last few outings like “Cars 2,” “Brave” and “Monsters University” — while successful and, with the exception of “Cars 2,” generally well received by critics — were viewed by many as a warning sign that the studio was losing its mojo.
“Inside Out's” Rotten Tomatoes "fresh" rating is currently hovering at an almost unheard of 98 percent — well, unheard of for studios other than Pixar, anyway — and it already seems like an obvious contender for Best Animated Feature come awards season. Given director Pete Docter’s track record (“Monster, Inc.,” “Up”), that’s not altogether surprising.
Meanwhile, among the other records "Jurassic World" is setting, Universal announced on Monday (via the Los Angeles Times) that it had crossed the billion-dollar line at the international box office, making it the fastest movie ever to hit that number, doing it in just 13 days. The previous record holder, “The Avengers,” took 14.
All in all, it’s a good sign for the vitality of the Hollywood summer movie season that two movies with overlapping audiences can both have such a strong weekend.