For a brief moment this weekend, it looked like The Minions might overtake Shrek the Third for the biggest opening weekend of all-time for an animated film. Illumination’s latest slowed down by Sunday though and had to settle for second-best opening of all-time. No one is complaining though because that’s an incredible launch to the tune of $115.7 million.
What kind of legs will the yellow creatures have — the real test is in the weeks ahead. As Shrek the Third showed, a big opening doesn’t mean much if the film can’t sustain its momentum; that film ranks seventh on the list of all-time U.S. animation grosses with $322.7M, surpassed by a half-dozen films that started out more slowly but ultimately ended up attracting bigger audiences.
The 1st place opening by Minions makes it the second weekend in a row that an animated feature has topped the American box office. Last weekend, Pete Docter’s Inside Out finally took over the top spot in its third weekend in theaters. This weekend, the Pixar film slipped to third place behind both Minions and Jurassic World, with an estimated $17.7 million. It has grossed a fantastic $284.2M in the U.S. to date, and will soon surpass Up to become Pixar’s second-highest grossing original film of all-time, behind only the $339.7M take of Finding Nemo.