As anticipated, Warner Bros.’ The LEGO Movie, directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, destroyed the box office with a $69.1 million opening. Not only did it become WB’s biggest animated opening and the biggest animated February opening, it was also the second-biggest February opening of all-time trailing only Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ. According to the studio’s stated figures, the film cost just $60 million to produce, which is a fraction of the cost of major studio animated features, and even less than the $76 million production cost of Despicable Me 2. However, that figure is deceiving because Warner Bros. and co-producer Village Roadshow Pictures used Australian tax credits to offset the film’s cost.
Even with the arrival of LEGO Movie, Disney’s Frozen refused to quit. It earned $6.9M for 4th place in its 11th weekend of wide release. The film has amassed a massive $368.7M during its U.S. run and has nudged past Despicable Me 2 as the top animated film in the U.S. among 2013 releases. Also hanging in the top ten at No. 8 was Open Road Films’ The Nut Job, which added $3.8M for a $55.1M total.
Overseas, Frozen earned an additional $24 million, thanks in part to its fourth place $14.1M opening in China. The film’s international total stands at $545.1M and its global total is $913.7M. Meanwhile, DreamWorks’ Mr. Peabody & Sherman opened in the UK, a month in advance of its US launch. The film took first place with $6.4M although it was weaker than the $7.7M UK opening of Frozen and the $8.1M launch of The Croods.