It’s Disney’s year: the studio scored its third major animation hit in four months, and it’s their biggest yet. After stellar performances by Zootopia and the animation/live-action hybrid The Jungle Book, Disney launched Andrew Stanton’s Finding Dory, from its Pixar division, with an estimated $136.2 million.
That opening stands as the biggest-ever for an animated feature, easily topping the record-holding $121.6m of Shrek the Third in 2007. However, taking into account ticket price inflation, 1.8 million less people actually saw Finding Dory on its opening weekend than Shrek the Third. The release of Shrek 2 in 2004 also had a larger audience than the latest Pixar film.
Still, however you want to dissect it, this is a significant debut for Disney-Pixar, and by dollar amount, easily Pixar’s strongest, beating the 2010 opening of Toy Story 3, which debuted with $110m. It’s also a nice rebound for Pixar, whose last film, The Good Dinosaur, grossed just $123.1m over its entire theatrical run.