Remember last year when the mainstream media started writing about the glut of animated features and questioning whether the industry was producing too much animation? As usual, they underestimated the animation medium and the connection that audiences have with the art form. The continuing dominance of animation at the American box office suggests that if anything audiences want more, not less, animation. This weekend The LEGO Movie handily won the top spot with an estimated $48.8 million weekend total. Its closest competitor, About Last Night, earned $27M.
The LEGO Movie declined an astonishingly slim 29.3% from its debut weekend. By comparison, megahits like Despicable Me 2 and Frozen declined 47.4% and 53.1% respectively in their second frames. It’s a four-day weekend in the United States so LEGO Movie may hit a $60M four-day total by the end of Monday. Its domestic box office total is currently $129.1M.
Disney’s Frozen earned $5.9M (est), slipping to eighth place in its 12th weekend of wide release. The decline in gross was only due to a smaller theater count (2,100 screens versus the previous week’s 2,460) because this weekend’s per-theater average of $2,787 remained virtually identical to last week’s $2,794 per-theater gross. Frozen has grossed $376M to date. The Nut Job tacked on an extra $1.8M expanding its overall total to $57.5M.