The film is now all but guaranteed to surpass The Boss Baby: Family Business, at $57.3M, to become the highest-grossing domestic release of 2021. More importantly, it stands a shot of hitting $100M, a figure that is perhaps more important symbolically than financially at this point.
Since March 2020, no animated film has been able to reach that amount in the United States. Compare that to live-action, where ten live-action films have already achieved $100M in 2021. For live-action, that’s a 57% drop from 2019, when 23 films reached $100M+. (In 2019, six animated films topped $100M).
Of course, it’s hard for any animated film to reach this figure if the films aren’t even playing in cinemas. Some of the year’s most high-profile releases, like Luca, The Mitchells vs. the Machines, and Vivo bypassed theatrical entirely, opting instead for streaming debuts. This strategy may portend a coming change in how animated features are released, as streaming services increasingly use animated films as an enticement to parents to sign up for their services.
Encanto itself won’t be exclusive to theaters for long. The film becomes available on Disney+ December 24th.