SATURDAY UPDATE: Universal/Illumination’s Minions: The Rise Of Gru is lighting up at the global and international box office, set to be the current frame’s No. 1 film domestically, overseas and worldwide through Sunday. Gru and the crew are now out in 61 offshore markets, having released early in Australia and adding such majors as Mexico, Brazil, Germany, the UK and Spain through yesterday.
The estimated worldwide cume through Sunday is eyed at $202.16M. Of that, overseas is expected to rep $92.7M. In this weekend’s new markets only, the launch is $81M. Coming into the session, projections were at $70M+, so this is a great bump. The full frame estimates on new markets (excluding previews) are tracking about 20% below 2015’s Minions and 13% behind 2017’s Despicable Me 3 at today’s exchange rates. Meanwhile, the TikTok “Minions In Suits” challenge which we told you about yesterday (see below), continues to go viral.
Through Friday, the offshore gross (including Australia) is $40.9M. Along with the five markets that scored the biggest animation opening day of all time (see previous story below), Poland is now in the mix as well. Also, 13 markets have had the biggest Illumination opening day ever including the UK.
In the UK, a $3.3M No. 1 opening on Friday was also the best start ever for a Universal animated film and an Illumination title, topping all other Despicable Me/Minions franchise entries. The day’s take was comparable to the opening day of Frozen 2 and Incredibles 2, and 4.5x Lightyear. The Rise Of Gru is playing across 630 locations and 1,510 screens with the full weekend estimate now at $13.7M.
As for other Friday openers on TROG, Spain captured $1.2M from 176,882 admissions. This is the biggest animated Friday opening since Frozen 2. The gang owned the No.1 spot taking 65% of the market share and grossed almost 6x the No.2 film, Universal’s own Jurassic World Dominion. TROG is playing across 424 locations, with No. 1s in 376 theaters. The weekend is estimated to hit $3.6M.
Poland opened to $700K on Friday, breaking the record of biggest pandemic opening day — beating Spider-Man: No Way Home — and setting the biggest animation opening day of all time and 4th biggest Universal opening ever. It should land at $1.9M through Sunday.
Mexico, which released Thursday this week, increased on Friday to cume $5.2M so far with a projected $12.2M for the session. Germany, which has generally experienced some softness lately, jumped 117% on Friday and has cumed $1.8M through Friday with a weekend estimate of $5M. Brazil is at $1M through yesterday with $4.4M on the cards through Sunday.
Elsewhere, Indonesia is on track for a terrific $3.6M start; the Middle East has broken records (see below) and is overall seeing $4.2M through tomorrow. Argentina saw uptick on Friday versus Thursday with TROG taking 70% of the market share. The full session is looking at $2.9M.
In Australia, TROG’s 2nd weekend hold is doing vicious business with a Friday that was almost double last week’s same day. The cume to date is $9.1M, which is 53% above Minions and 71% above DM3 at the same point.
We’ll have a full update on Sunday.
PREVIOUS, FRIDAY: After releasing early in Australia last weekend, Universal/Illumination’s Minions: The Rise of Gru is looking groovy at the international box office, adding $14.6M in 39 new offshore market openings across Wednesday and Thursday. Coupled with Oz’s first week, the running offshore cume through Thursday is $22.5M. A further 21 markets open today including the UK and Spain.
The origins story from directors Kyle Balda, Brad Ableson and Jonathan Del Val is already seeing strong results in several hubs with the biggest animation opening day of all time in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Cyprus, Czech Republic and Israel.
Australia boogied to great mid-weeks and entered frame 2 yesterday with a $1.4M Thursday — an incredible +303% on the opening Thursday last week. The market has now cumed $7.9M, ahead of Minions (+45%), and Despicable Me 3 (+59%) at the same point.
Latin America is also digging the 1970s-set take on how Gru and the crew got together with Mexico debuting to $1.5M across 920 locations and 4,053 screens, taking 60% of the market share. Including previews this brings the cume through Thursday to $3.2M.
Brazil bowed on Thursday to $500K across 732 locations and 2,012 screens. TROG nabbed the No.2 opening day for an animated film during the pandemic. And Argentina kicked off with $400K for the biggest launch of an Illumination animation in terms of box office (which in recent years has been highly boosted by inflation). In terms of admissions, the opening day is the second biggest for Illumination, only below Minions.
The Middle East grossed a combined $1.3M through Thursday from 228 locations and 709 screens.
Germany got in on the action on Thursday with $600K, giving Gru the No. 1 spot at 698 locations and across 1,359 screens. The day was worth 50% of the market share.
Indonesia, following sneaks on Tuesday and a $600K opening on Wednesday (which was the Despicable Me franchise’s best-ever and the 2nd biggest animation opening day of all time), added another $500K on Thursday. The film has cumed $1.2M so far which is above all previous entries in the series at the same point.
Israel’s Thursday opening was $400K — as noted above, the biggest animation opening day ever — taking 80% of business. The film played across 38 locations and on 90 screens. All were sell-outs. In the market, the local team captured teen audiences with TikTok stunt “Minions in Suits” (ie: going to see the movie wearing a suit) making a splash as user-generated videos went viral and with kids competing on who was buying more tickets.
Czech Republic’s Thursday start was $300K, achieving the biggest animation opening day ever. Thursday was the end of the school year, so the timing was strategically fortuitous and word of mouth is great.
Philippines opened at No.1 on Wednesday with $89K for the top Hollywood animated opening of the pandemic.
The overseas projection on TROG was $70M+ coming into the session and so far signs are positive. We’ll know more once we see how the UK performs and will update throughout the weekend.