<em>Princess and the Frog</em> Tops $100 Mil <em>Princess and the Frog</em> Tops $100 Mil
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Princess and the Frog Tops $100 Mil

Princess and the Frog

After nine weeks in wide release, Disney’s Princess and the Frog limped across the $100 million mark last weekend. It generated $757,000 at the North American box office for a grand total that now stands at $100,309,000. Somehow I have the feeling there won’t be a lot of people uncorking the champagne in Burbank today.

  • Rene Ramos

    I haven’t seen the movie so I can just say what’s making me avoid it in theaters: I feel that the “New Orleans’ bayou” isn’t the same as “in some village past the mountains, centuries ago…”. It feels extremely americanized for a worldwide audience, who expect a universal tale with no place or time, just like The Emperor’s New Groove’s Peru setting completely trashed the famous Hans C. Andersen short story, which already was a modernization of old muslim tales. A new modification that wasn’t really needed just to make the story longer. Look at the Little Mermaid.

    I think this is another “The misterious case of the boring trailer for a fantastic film”.

  • doop

    I think there are a couple of things people need to remember before overreacting and nailing coffins.

    First off, Disney is still on the path of repairing it’s brand name which has long since lost the quality from the renaissance days. With the over-saturation of Direct to DVD sequels and spin-offs coupled with the Disney name being slapped on shallow films like G-Force even to this day, it’s no surprise that the Disney Castle still has a long way to go before they can viewed with the mark of quality that brings in numbers like the days of yonder. Pixar continues to thrive on name alone, and that’s for a reason.

    In addition is the one-sided marketing and appearance of this film to audiences. The PRINCESS and the Frog. Cut the male audience out. The PRINCESS and the Frog. Cut the older audiences out. You’re left with the final domestic number you see. Yes, boys and adults can enjoy it, but it wasn’t marketed to them, and the boys and and adults that did go to see it can’t really make a dent in comparison to the percentage of it’s targeted audience. I feel the marketing department missed a huge opportunity to appeal to boys with the likes of the strong male leads on the show, like Facilier, Ray, Louis and Naveen. Even with the toys, I walked through a Toy’s R Us recently to find that Avatar had it’s own section, Alvin & and the Chipmunks did, and so did Cars. Oh wait, no, Cars had it’s own AISLE. Cars. The movie from four years ago still had more exposure to kids than Frog.

    And the most obvious I feel is the near-catastrophic timing close to Avatar. It’s like… damn, it just HAD to be placed next to the debut of one of the largest grossing movies in the history of time. That sucks. To add insult to injury is again Alvin and crew stealing away young audiences and parents. This was what Frog was up against. A game-changing blockbuster movie and an established popular franchise movie. Considering this, I feel Frog held it’s own admirably to say the least.

    To end on a long rant is just the need to say… keep making quality films Disney Feature. There’s still a long way to go, and Frog wasn’t a flop by any means (in fact, heyday films like The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast did similar numbers in their run!), I just hope the leaders of that studio have enough foresight to not be too discouraged by the performance of this film. Just my two cents anyway.

  • doop

    I’d also like to add that there are quite a number of foreign markets yet to see this film’s release, so hopefully this film’s gross will continue a steady climb. Also, the DVD sales should be quite generous to a film like this.

  • “Somehow I have the feeling there won’t be a lot of people uncorking the champagne in Burbank today.”

    Because people would rather see idiot CGI sequels than a Disney hand-drawn original.

  • Erik

    In most European countries Princess and the frog, didn’t get theatrically released until this month. So I guess the gross could still double… I hope so anyway.

  • Brian Kidd

    That’s a darned shame. I really liked this film far more than I had expected. My son absolutely loves it. I hope this doesn’t sour Disney on traditional animation. The film was their most-solid entry in a very long time. They should be proud of it.

  • Ethan

    Not to take away any merit to the film, nor to the artists, but I think they should stop treating animation as a genre. The refusal to take any kind of risk, or doing something new, is beginning to show on their bottom line. The publicity made sure everyone see it as the same old Disney musical formula. What worked in the part doesn’t work anymore.

    My wishful thinking mind wants to believe it means people want something new, but I’m probably wrong.

  • Man this is sad, especially when you look at how much Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel has hauled in.

  • Gary Pearson

    I thought it was a very good movie with lots of heart, good songs, well played jokes and characters, and all beautifully drawn. More people should have seen it. My family of 5 thoroughly enjoyed it. Maybe they won’t be popping champagne corks over the box office, but they should be proud of the film.

  • Mike Johnson

    I remember when $100 million was a LOT of money.

    It’s pretty sad that a film’s success is measured only by it’s performance at the box office. As a society we have become so obsessed with money that the ability to determine what makes good art has become an all but lost skill.

    I really enjoyed The Princess and the Frog, and think that it truly did re-capture a lot of the “original” Disney magic. I am sure it will do well on home video, and make even more money.

    Perhaps if had been about blue aliens the execs would be more pleased with the outcome…

  • Dave

    The Princess & the Frog cumulative worldwide gross to date on “The Numbers” web page:


    Total US Gross – $100,309,000
    International Gross- $67,300,000
    Worldwide Gross- $167,609,000 (as of Feb. 1, 2010)

  • squirrel

    Yaaay. Princess and the Frog reached over $100 million in…. nine… quick weeks…… yay.

  • Ethan> While I do generally agree with you, I think it’s important to remember that Disney isn all but trying to rebuild its brand from the ground up here. Because of that, don’t think it was a bad or wrongheaded idea to start off with a princess film that would hearken back to what Disney was once famous for. Do I want to see hand-drawn animated feature films that break out of the fairy tale box? Absolutely. But I think Disney is going to need to balance the riskier stuff with the sure bets however their film are faring. And I think right now, the idea was to lead with what Disney thought would be a sure thing. I think balance could have been very useful for Disney from about 2000 on, when they had a long line of animated films without a fairy tale to speak of, several of which were big flops. While there’s no guarantee that a fairy tale would have saved Disney animation, I think it was unwise of the studio to put all of their eggs in the experimentation basket for so long.

  • When a film tells you its amazing in the trailer it makes me not want to see it. I think most people feel this way. Also when all you can talk about is how amazing he creators are. Its like they are talking down to the audience. Also I really hate when they sample some piece of audio that says “this will be good” no. no don’t do that. I don’t need to be told its good, show me its good. Trailers have to tell a short story about the film, isn’t it rule number one in story telling don’t say it show it? All this aside I hear its a good film, but I will wait for the Blu Ray.

  • I love Ron & John’s work, but I was a little turned off by the character design and the broadness of the humor I saw in the trailer. But seeing the whole film in the theater, I loved it! I wish more people had seen it; I know many animators and Disney fans who haven’t made the attempt to see it. It”s also disheartening that The Squeakquel has made more than twice as much.

  • re: doop’s comments that the marketing cuts out boys and older audience members.

    I don’t buy it. Despite the vampires and werewolves in the marketing materials, Twilight is an exclusively young-to-teen girl oriented phenomenon and it doesn’t seem to have suffered for it at all. I’m fairly certain that its popularity among girls (and the fact that the con drew an inordinate number of them who were only there to squeal and shriek at the Twilight panel) is at the root of the Twilight backlash at last year’s San Diego Comic Con.

  • Bugs Jetstone

    I saw it, and I just didn’t think it was all that great. That might account for some of the slack in the ticket sales. Keeping the boys away wasn’t that great a decision either.

    Also: how about a moratorium on the f#ckin’ princess garbage for a while? It was disconcerting to see Disney 2D come back after all this time to do basically the same old thing.

  • Scarabim

    I have my doubts about the future Disney movie slate. Alice seems like a winner, but reboots of Tron and Black Hole??? And a muppet movie??? Wha-???? :P Sorcerers Apprentice seems interesting, but a movie based on the Jungle Cruise seems almost as wrong-headed as the muppets one, since the ride is terribly, embarrassingly dated (just as the muppets are. Really, I cringe when I see them now. Bohemian Rhapsody was okay, but the voices are all weird-sounding now and the puppets look like…puppets. CGI has spoiled me, I guess).

    The one bright spot, to me, is the Snow Queen film. The original story by Hans C. Anderson is wonderful, and I can foresee some great animation arising from it. Got my fingers crossed…

  • Son of Sons

    This film isn’t doing much repeat business, is it?

  • Donald C.

    How utterly depressing.

  • I don’t consider any film that makes more than 100 million a “flop.” Ok, I understand it wasn’t as big as hoped, but I think it’s a modest little victory. It’s at least enough to say there’s still some interest in 2D animation.

  • Spike

    It’s not out in the UK yet.
    I’ll do my best to try and get people to see it, but what can you really do?

  • I still haven’t seen it yet.

    I’m sorry, guys, it’s all my fault :(

  • Christina S.

    @Sruli: Well, the film’s budget was $105 million, so if all the film took in was $100 million, then it would be a flop, yes. Mind you, Amid was only talking about domestic numbers; as someone pointed out earlier, when you include the money it’s made globally, its gross revenue is actually over $167 million.

    But… yeah. Definitely a bad, baaad idea to have this movie come out so close to Avatar, and the trailers for it made it look really lame. Honestly, I wouldn’t have gone and seen it, had I not read a lot of buzz about it from an imageboard I go to.

  • M Nilsson

    hahah Nice, I tought the movie was crap!!

  • Disney’s “The Princess and the Frog” had a strong $9.6-million opening in France. It took the No. 1 spot in that country from “Avatar,” which had been top for six weekends. Disney’s first hand-drawn animated feature in six years has reached $78.3 million internationally, and it has yet to open in several major markets, including Britain. In the U.S. and Canada it is wrapping up its run with a relatively disappointing $100 million.

  • FP

    Princess. Musical. Disney. Three words together that are poison to me. Maybe others feel the same way? Regardless, it would have been nice if the film was a blockbuster.

  • Mac

    Not quite out in the UK yet, I wonder how it will do over here. It’s being advertised quite heavily on T.V and awareness of this film seems to be much higher than it was for Up which I saw very few adverts for (when I saw it in the cinema lots of people in the theatre hadn’t even heard of it and were only there because their friends had taken them). There’s also a lot of positive buzz for it. It’s clear this film hasn’t been the smash in the US that Disney would have hoped for, but I imagine it will still make a lot of money world-wide and on DVD.

    I agree with those that say a Disney film with the word ‘Princess’ in the title after a decade of ‘Disney Princesses’ being a franchise aimed squarely at little girls (with a bunch of related low quality cheapquels to boot) hasn’t helped this film. Also a lot of the gags in the main trailer made it look pretty stupid.

  • That’s a definite upward trend from their previous 2D feature “Home on the Range” ($50 million). Not that HOTR was a poor movie, I think it shows the audience is more ready to give themselves permission to watch an old-fashioned 2D feature today.

    And it did $100 million without selling a single extra-fee 3D ticket. That’s pretty good for something people said was dead a few years ago.

    I hope Disney sees this a promising indicator.

    Probably would have done another $30 million by now if it had not a release that overlapped that of a movie that has become the largest grossing movie of all time.


    Well I can’t comment on the content of the movie because I didn’t see it, but it really seemed like the only reason the movie existed was to bolster the “Disney Princess” product line and because it had to work because theoretically *all* Disney Princess movies worked. It felt a lot like they were resting on their laurels with this one.

    Maybe they should spend less on these movies so they can take more chances. It might be a while before any 2D movie makes more than 100 million dollars.

  • It’s the AVATARD effect. All the Avatards keep going to see Avatar and giving Cameron their money.

  • Carlos

    Well,in terms of Disney Formulae..you are right,they need to change it…but look at trasure planet…I think there wasn’t any musical ideal there, what they need, it’s a inspirational,original fresh ideas…like what hayao miyazaki does for his own movies in japan, they are not straightforward,it just keeps you amazed,keeps your eyes peeled to the screen, they need more of that on disney,take the inocennce and rename it into todays world,they need to get inspired by other people and personalities and apply em.

    I would like to see more of this coming from disney, as I prefer traditional animation rather than 3d animation,there are tons of people who’re still eager to do so, but if disney keeps getting nervous about changing the formula,they will get stuck in the 90’s, My idea is….THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX.

  • Anyone who says this film didn’t take risks or that it hews to some hackneyed “Princess” formula hasn’t seen it.

    I loved the film. Saw it for the second time yesterday, with my wife (who cried at all the right moments). Wonderful heartfelt story, well-defined characters, great music, SUPERB animation, the most horrifying, literally satanic villain in Disney – hell, ANYbody’s – history. Especially impressive that the classy, artistic, stylized animation sequence came during a major number within the film and not the end credits.

    There’s no excuse why anyone who loves hand-drawn and wants it to survive should avoid seeing this film. Leave your pre-conceived notions at home and go buy a ticket.

  • Hulk

    Everyone should remember to keep things in perspective. At the CNT convention in Burbank a few months ago, they screened “Waking Sleeping Beauty” about the rebirth of Disney animation in the 80’s and 90’s. One fact I found very telling was that “the Care bears movie” out grossed “The Black Cauldron”- which was then Disney’s first foray in to doing 2d animation again. 2D animation came back to life anyway. in spite of the fact that black cauldron stunk. And today WHO remembers the care bears movie over anything made by Disney? I think we can all agree that princess and the frog is a better movie that black cauldron. Fantasia was a flop when it came out but I bet every commentator here has seen it. Disney movies don’t have to be a huge hit right out of the gate. They’re evergreen. They have staying power. You watch- 10 years from now, people will have Princess and the Frog as part of their home collection- and there will be a whole generation of young people who haven’t even heard of avatar or Alvin the squeakuel. Mark my words.

  • Philboyd Studge

    Agree that marketing was foolish. Call it Frog Prince and you’d get the boys in.

    New Orleans and surrounding swamp is not Americanized. It’s the least American setting in the U.S.

    Loved everything about it, except the frogs, and their bland character design. If magic can transform them into frogs, it can downsize some appropriate costumes and retain a lot more of their humanity, especially in their faces.

    Music, backgrounds, atmosphere, story, and acting, were all perfect, IMHO.

  • Autumn

    It’s a damn shame, I liked this movie SO much more than Avatar. PatF deserved more than this.

  • Klyph

    I’m confused as to the bleakness of this news. Would we rather have had it not gross $100 million? Especially considering it’s 24 million opening weekend, I would come to think that it had pretty good legs to get all the way to $100 million. Let’s do a little history here:

    Home on the Range 2004 – $50 million
    Brother Bear 2003 – $85 million
    Lilo & Stitch 2002 – $145 million
    Treasure Planet 2002 – $38 million
    Atlantis 2001 – $84 million
    Emperor’s New Groove 2000 – $89 million

    So it’s the second highest grossing 2D movie of the last decade and we’re all dismissing it as a flop? Am I the only one that sees this as good news?

  • Ethan

    That 100M is the ticket sales, it’s not the amount of money the studio received.

    As a usual rule of thumb, the “domestic” box office needs to be above the production budget (105M) for the studio to actually make money. The distributors and theater chains take a large cut (can be as much as 55%), the marketing budget is huge, etc… So it needs something like 210M worldwide to simply break even.

  • Marc Baker

    ‘Perhaps if had been about blue aliens the execs would be more pleased with the outcome…’

    Yeah, and don’t forget the effeminate vampires, and warewolves. That’ll put the butts in the seats. All joking aside, you’ve made some very good points about the challenges that Disney faces right now to reclaim it’s former glory.

  • Skip

    One thing that everyone is forgetting. This film came out the week before Avatar, and for its opening week the princess and the frog debuted at the number one spot. Avatar was a monster of a blockbuster, and after spending 7 weeks is at the box office Avatar has managed to retain the number one spot. Even heavy hitters like Denzel Washington, and Mel Gibson can’t seem to shake it. I sincerely believe that had the princess had come out say a month before Avatar that the Princess and the Frog could have possibly hit the 200 million dollar domestic gross mark.

  • amid

    Klyph: The bleakness is based on the fact that it underperformed to the expectations of the Disney studio, the artists who worked on it, and the industry in general. The benchmarks for this film are other contemporary animated films and Disney’s successful princess movies of the ’90s. It is a naive analysis to compare it to hand-drawn features of recent years.

  • Kyle Maloney

    I hear The Princess and the Frog is the first hand-drawn animated film since Lilo & Stitch to make over $100 million domestically. That has to be worth something, right?

  • FP

    Home on the Range 2004 – $50 million
    Brother Bear 2003 – $85 million
    Lilo & Stitch 2002 – $145 million
    Treasure Planet 2002 – $38 million
    Atlantis 2001 – $84 million
    Emperor’s New Groove 2000 – $89 million

    The film in the above list that made the most money was the only completely enjoyable one. Has Disney noticed that?

    Maybe someone in the know will compare the budgets and box office take of STITCH and FROG, adjusted for inflation.

  • Brad Constantine

    I took my two kids (girl 6 and boy 9) to go see it. The boy only went because the sister was going. He had no interest as a 9 year old boy(even the son of an animator) to go see it,and told me it was a “girl movie”. After it was over I asked if they liked it. They both said yes, but in the same way a child says yes when you asked if he ate all of his brocolli. I asked the kids if they would like to see it again. They both said no, thank you, but did say that they would watch it on DVD when it came out. They both asked to go see the Alvin movie. I let Mom take them to that one. I did asked if they liked it, and they both said the first one was better. straight poop from real kids.

  • JWC

    I thought the movie was one of the better Disney efforts in a while (Lilo & Stitch was ok, the rest were pretty crappy) and I don’t include the Pixar films. I think people may be ignoring one aspect – the ethnicity of the title character. Disney, to its credit, heard the calls to provide a princess for African-American girls. However, the general rule in Hollywood is that with certain exceptions, there is a reason why most leading men and women are Caucasian.

  • Steve Stanchfield

    It is amazing to think that 100 m is a number associated with failure in ANY way…. considering the market and the reintroduction of classic animation style from Disney, it’s a fine thing. I think that the idea that EVERY movie has to be a blockbuster and has to make mind-boggling numbers is part of the problem in new Hollywood. After the worldwide and video releases we’ll see how it comes in. Honestly, who else but Disney, Dreamworks or Pixar would be unhappy with a movie making 100 million dollars? Then again, it did have a high budget…..

    Let’s hope they are in it for the bigger picture this time… remember feature animation almost got canned in favor of TV animation after Black Cauldren….moving everyone out of the animation buildings…. and there’s an 8 year gap between the failure of Bambi and the return to feature format with Cinderella, filled with compilation films and live action with animated sequences…..

  • Klyph

    Amid: So it’s naive to compare it to hand-drawn features of the last 10 years but I should compare it to hand-drawn features from 20 years ago? No offense, but I think that is the more naive comparison. Disney had virtually no competition when it came to animated films in the 90’s heyday of Beauty and the Beast, Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Lion King and was well before the innovation of CG and 3D pixar films. The Disney films these days have to go against very powerful Fox, Sony and Dreamworks animation studios the likes of which didn’t exist in the 90’s. I know Princess and the Frog didn’t do as well as other animated movies this year like Up or Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs, but the movies in the 90s didn’t have competition nearly that high of caliber. I mean what competition did Beauty and the Beast have? Rock-A-Doodle and Rover Dangerfield?

    I can’t say I know what Disney’s expectations were for the movie going up against the highest grossing movie of all time and against a squeakquel to a movie franchise that grossed $217 million dollars two years ago. But to me a movie made in a medium that was pronounced dead 5 years ago, going up against that kind of competition in a much more crowded family movie market in a weak economy that still manages to gross $100 million dollars does not constitute a ‘bleak’ outcome for me.

  • Ethan

    “The film in the above list that made the most money was the only completely enjoyable one. Has Disney noticed that?”

    Of course, any intelligent executive would take good care the writers and directors of Lilo and Stitch, noticing instantly that it’s the only successful 2D from the studio in the last decade.

    No… wait… They did not, they said Lilo and Stitch is “too quirky” :-(

  • amid

    Klyph: Whether you or I think it should be different, that’s the thinking within Hollywood and that is why the film wasn’t considered a huge success. I don’t make the rules.

  • Mr. James

    If you look at the last 6 movies Disney decided to green light in the hand-drawn animation genre, I’m surprised that Disney has all but shunned a true “epic action/adventure” film. If they would capitalize on the success of “Pirates” and produce a young swashbuckler’s movie they might be able to get the kiddies to keep their butts in the seats a little longer and maybe end up seeing it twice.

    I’d love to see what they did with their children’s book series about the young Jack Sparrow. Why not continue that as an animated series? I mean a monster like the Kracken produced with traditional animation?!! How hot would THAT be?!

    Just my 2 cents.

  • barney_miller

    I’m actually quite shocked that so many people here enjoyed the film. I was really hoping for Disney to knock this one out of the park (esp. since I had several friends who worked on it). However, I thought it didn’t deliver at all.

    The story was all over the place as was the look and consistency of the animation.

    I think it underperformed simply because it was so forgettable. It was a watered down version of the past “Princess” films. The stakes were incredibly low for the main character. If Ariel had failed in her goals she would’ve been enslaved forever. Belle traded her life for her father’s. If Tiana fails, she won’t get a restaurant. So what.

    Also, Dr. Facilier’s motivations were never clear. Did he want money? If so, why does he need to turn anyone into a frog to get it. Why not just use the shadow demons to steal money from people. Maybe he could’ve owned a restaurant that was competing with Tiana’s plans; something to put them in direct conflict with each other.

    Also, I really don’t think Avatar had anything to do with it failing at the box office. It certainly didn’t keep Sherlock Holmes and the Chipmunks sequel from making money.

  • “I hear The Princess and the Frog is the first hand-drawn animated film since Lilo & Stitch to make over $100 million domestically. That has to be worth something, right?”


    The Simpsons Movie made more than $180 million domestically, more than any other cartoon based from a TV production.

  • It seems like people either really thought it was a bad movie or they thought it was a GREAT movie on this site. I think it was somewhere in the middle. I feel as thought Jon and Ron were pressured to fallow a formula that was clearly seen through out the movie. You had all the right songs, the typical, “Princess living happily ever after”, part at the end, and a typical villain who did not really have much depth. I felt like it was a bit of a bland story line that lacked fruitful main characters.

    However, the movie did have it’s moments. I mean the animation was pretty superb. We saw some of the best Disney animators at work, and their talent showed. The whole New Orleans twist was very good as well. Some of the landscapes were marvelous.

    I think 100 million is about right for a movie like Princess and the Frog. The story had it’s moments and had it’s falling outs, I don’t think it has much to do with the movie being 2D.

  • It hasn’t come out in Belgium either. I think it’s a big mistake to postpone a european release so long. Look at Avatar: it’s released at the same time all over the world. Sometimes the movie is already available on dvd in the States when it hits the big screen in Europe. What’s the logic behind that?

  • G Melissa Graziano

    I completely agree with doop. The film completely missed out on the young male demographic with their girl-only marketing. I heard parents (to be exact, Disney Store guests) tell me that they “only had boys” and didn’t even consider taking them to the new movie. When you lose half your target demo, you lose a lot.

    I do think Avatar had some contribution to its lack of sales, but I wouldn’t blame it completely. I agree that not having an immediate worldwide rrelease has hurt the numbers (whereas it has helped Avatar’s tremendously), but we’ll have to see how it does overseas.

  • Where is $105 million in ”The Princess and the Frog”??????????!!!!!!!!!

  • Faris

    I believe the reason that a movie like “Avatar” continues to tear up the box office and other films have a less than stellar showing, is word of mouth. People tell family, friends, co-workers, etc., “you HAVE to see this film,” and as a result the film has legs at the box office. As a life-long fan of Disney’s hand-drawn features, I was anxious to see “The Princess and the Frog” and I saw the film on its opening weekend. I thought that the film was lovely to look at, (decent design work, good animation, handsome backgrounds, etc), but suffered from a poorly structured story and an excess of songs which all seemed to have been shoe-horned into the film. While it was great to see hand-drawn Disney animation on the big screen again and as much as I would have enjoyed telling friends and family, “you HAVE to see this film,” I didn’t recommend it to anyone.

  • purin

    I wonder if the DVD sales will make up for it. Some movies do much better on video than in theaters. The DVD is coming out surprisingly soon.

    I enjoyed this movie, and my kid sister says it’s her new favorite Disney movie. I know that I don’t need to justify my interest with a movie’s financial success, but it would help if studios considered movies I like profitable so I could see more of them. I’m really not looking forward to seeing the Chipmunks Squeakuel constantly on TV as I did the first one (stupid cable movie channels).

  • wgan

    Teodor says:

    Where is $105 million in ”The Princess and the Frog”??????????!!!!!!!!!

    Yeah, they spend way too much on that; even build a full-sized castle wouldn’t cost that much, or are animators paid really well these days??

  • I don’t think anyone predicted how slowly Avatar‘s week-to-week take has deteriorated over seven weeks. There must be something to that film that it has done so well in that amount of time. Had Avatar bombed, I’m sure people would be comparing it to Howard the Duck right now.

    The Princess and the Frog‘s selling point was “Disney returns to 2D.” Disney was trying to piggyback off its past virtues, when its uninspired 2000s 2D films (Lilo & Stitch excepted) caused the decline that P&F has tried to address. Disney needs to re-earn the filmgoers’ collective trust.

  • ZN

    It’s possible that Disney miscalculated on people being ready to go back to the traditional whimsical adventure with princesses and showtunes. Like it or don’t, but the only song and dance modern audiences are enduring anymore are the tacky closing Smash Mouth songs in the Shrek films where everyone comes out and does the can can for no apparent reason.

    I thought the film was decent, but there’s a reason why Shrek (which I did not enjoy) was so successful in the first place.. maybe Disney should have thought it through a little more.

  • purin

    Another note: As much as I cringe at ads that ride on past successes, when you look at old theatrical trailers for, say, The Little Mermaid, they often do the exact same thing.

    A little off-topic thing I’ve wanted to mention on CB: When the first trailers with frog Tiana came out, a lot of people thought she looked very bland, myself included. Interestingly enough, my young sister and toddler-age cousin were very attracted to it. I have plushies of both frogs, and my sister loves to play as Tiana (who has superpowers), and my cousin, if handed Naveen frog, will consider it a second, put it down, and pick up Tiana frog.

  • I personally see this as a good thing. Remember what Tim Burton said? Pixar makes good movies with CG technology, and BECAUSE these movies are so successful, everyone else is doing CG movies. If “The Princess and the Frog” becomes a huge success, it’s very likely we’ll start seeing some other hand-drawn movies pop up.

  • Ed Thompson

    I saw the film and quite enjoyed it. I had expected to have some problems with the film, an American Princess in New Orleans? Who’s the prince? I was very happy with the way those 2 situations worked out.

    I have minor quibbles with the film. The villain, though more than evil enough, didn’t have as big of a part as I would have wanted. He should have caused more problems for the main characters throughout the movie instead of just at the beginning and the end. And the rich girl was a little too irritating for me.

    But those are minor quibbles, not major ones. Though this movie is not on par with the very best Disney movies, I thought it was solidly in the second tier. Because I enjoy hand drawn animation, I am really sorry it has not done better.

  • FP

    This thread made me curious. I hadn’t seen the FROG movie. Mondays (today), my wife visits her very elderly mother. I have the evening to myself. So, I drive down to the theater chain a half-mile from my house, $9.50 in hand. My knees are shot, and it’s f*ckin cold, or I’d walk. Movie ain’t playing, so I wasted gas. Should have checked the f*ckin web listings. F*ck. Gas money down the toilet, god dammit. So, I return home and download FROG with FIGHT CLUB. Telecine’d version, about as good as commercial DVD. Who makes these things? Takes almost five minutes. I’ll DVR HOUSE to watch later with spouse.

    FROG sucks. Boring. Not watchable. Crappy music. My demo is: animation-loving, dad-age, childless, permanently-disillusioned cynic. Damn movie sucks. Nice animation, but SUCKS. Sucks. Too bad I can’t make the text bigger for that SUCKS part. An ordeal to sit through. Wouldn’t have made it through ten minutes on TV. I don’t care what happens in this movie.

    I hated TWILIGHT, too, so maybe my opinion is not relevant. But, this thing sucks hard. Cheezus. I just put in a FUTURAMA DVD to cleanse the palette.

    And yeah, I’ve paid to see AVATAR twice already.

  • I went to watch the movie, it was terrific as everytime, I also bought the Soundtrack from Itunes, I love that dig a little deeper music so.. I know that society is about money but.. They are still selling it and also DVDs are comin’ and also ohhh… I hate people. Hpw can you prefer a stupid Alvin and the chipmunks sequel? bahhh

  • Andrew Kieswetter

    I enjoyed The Princess & the Frog. Just grossing over $100m isn’t too
    bad. I really hope Disney will keep on making animated features that
    will appeal to audiences of all ages and both sexes. On the subject of
    sequels,I really hope they’ll make a sequel to Bolt. Either that or a tv series.

  • It seems to me that we are separating box office take from quality and artistic considerations. The fact that the expected bottom line was not reached at Diz (at least to date) actually means very little in analyzing this movie, which, by the way, was excellent on nearly all counts.
    No one knows, except for educated guessers and paid acturial psychics, how much a given movie will gross post-release. However, by that point, the picture is finished and the only question left is, what sort of story did this film tell, how well did it tell it, and how well-crafted was the result in terms of it’s medium. This would have been a fine movie if it had grossed $25 million. Judging the picture by its profits is like judging real NFL players by nothing but their fantasy football statistics and point values.
    My congratulations to Disney and their 2D team, which I see includes many past lights of the 2D days. I applaud this film and hope for more in the same spirit

  • Pedro Nakama

    I have enjoyed Ron and John’s work in the past but this was not their best. Bad story, too many characters, non-memorable songs and a not so scary villain. I would bet my bottom dollar(before I take it down to Burger King and buy a Whopper Jr) that there were many Disney execs pissing on this film to make it smell like them.

  • Ethan: Just curious, who said “Lilo and Stitch” was ‘too quirky’? I’ve heard that more than enough times about American Dog, but not about Lilo. Was this someone at Disney?

  • “Son of Sons says: This film isn’t doing much repeat business, is it?”

    I’ve seen it four times, my younger son five.

    I remember a similar situation when Disney released ‘The Rocketeer’ way back when – a lot of complaints the studio mismarketed it as a kiddie film & chased away the teen audiences that might’ve made it a bigger success.

  • Ross W

    Pixar has spoiled us. Last year, audiences stayed away from the rehashed princess story and instead went to see the completely original story of an old man who launches his house with a bjillion balloons to escape society and lands in South America with a boy scout stowaway and the adventures they have with a large bird, a talking dog and an evil explorer. Thanks to Pixar, the public now wants more than “the princess turns into a frog too”.

  • Adrian D

    I saw the movie 5 times in the cinema. I loved it. It “felt right” to me. There was some excellent animation in there and each time I watched it there was something new to explore. I really liked the voice acting and I found the characters to be so fun, too. I’m a big fan of the more broad action/comedy. Of all the animation I saw in theatres the past year, this is the movie I wish I could have worked on…

  • Acetate

    Saw it like it and even bought the soundtrack ! Any word yet on what the “powers that be” at Disney plan to do with 2-D based on the Frog’s numbers ?

  • victoria

    I think the movie didn’t do as good in theaters cause people dont go to the the movies like they used to, now if only you could measure success in illegeal downloads.

  • Squonk

    $100 million is nothing to sneeze at.

    What I don’t get is all the articles I’ve been reading leading up to the Oscar nominations that say what a box office disapointment “The Princess and the Frog” has been, and what a “hit” “Fantastic Mr. Fox” has been. The critics love Fox…but you can’t call it a hit. From what I see it hasn’t made it’s budget back yet and it’s highest ranking at the box office was 9th place (it’s wide release opening weekend)…that’s no hit in my book.

  • I finally watched the movie here in Spain. My first impression was “meh, but GREAT musical numbers”. After thinking a little about it, I thought the movie was pretty decent. It did have some great animation and some interesting characters and twists. However it could have been much more…The “frog” story is a little rushed. We know the alligator and it seems he’s going to be a great character like Baloo or, at least, like Mushu or Pumbaa, but he is just there to make some funny faces. He’s too limited by his sideckick condition. Then we have Ray, who is actually a little more developed, but why is he given such an stelar role? At least the alligator has something in common with the main characters: he wants to be human. Ray just meets them for some reason.

    IMO the best character was Mama Odie. I loved her song and I actually think the moral is not annoying for once. Mama Odie actually gave the character a wise advice to make them happier, and she does it through a song instead of a boring explanatory dialogue. Some brewster said in the movie review post that the song was useless cause Tiana didn’t get the message. I disagree. Tiana may not get the message, but the audience got it, and the song introduces what is going to happen in the climax of the film without totally spoiling it.

    And the climax was odd…there were some new things, there were some formulaic things and it lacked strength. But the very ending was pretty good.

    Overall I would take “Lilo and Stitch” over “Princess” any day, but “Princess” was way better than most of the other Disney movies since “Tarzan” and it had some really nice musical numbers in it. I know some people just hate musicals, but I really like them, especially in animation. I get it could become annoying when back in the 90s every animated film had to be a musical, but now there aren’t any musicals at all, so I missed them. Why can’t the industry show some variety instead of repeating the last trend?

  • Worst case scenario, Disney will take these numbers to mean that America doesn’t want to see another non-white princess ever again, and will do everything they can to keep any colored characters strictly in the background or as comic relief.

    What a nightmare.

    I loved the movie. I had a great time. I loved the musical numbers, usually despising that sort of thing…

    And the art shift for the restaurant daydream number was PERFECT.

    What a shame it isn’t doing so well.

  • jedited

    The one thing that everyone is missing is that this movie is a “brand builder”. This adds a new Princess and a new demographic to the Princess brand. Cars is number 8 worldwide box office out of 10 Pixar movies, but is consider a HUGE sucess due to it’s brand and merchandise.
    Disney USUALLY takes the long view on this kind of stuff. I agree with an earlier poster who said that this movie will be making money for Disney 10, 20, 30+ years from now. How much did Snow White and the Seven Dwarves make on DVD/Blu-Ray this last year and that movie is 70+ years old!!

  • While this discussion is still running (sort of), let’s look at another remindal that the US is not the only market which determines the success of this film:


  • mac

    I am not sure why everyone is thinking that the Princess and the Frog was not a a success. According to The numbers, worldwide box office has surpassed $196 milllion dollars, as of Feb 9th

    As well sales Tiana related merchandise is running 20% ahead of expectations. Not only that but the box office success of the movie has led Disney to approve additional hand drawn movies at the rate of 1 every two years.

    So all in all I think the movie was very successful, and that doesn’t include ancilliary revenue streams such as DVDs, blue ray, and of course the dreaded direct to DVD sequels etc.

    Not bad Tiana, not bad at all.

  • I realize I made a silly comment. I meant to say that on a different blog post.