Blue Sky’s The Peanuts Movie couldn’t compete with the latest James Bond entry Spectre, but still managed to launch in a strong second place with an estimated $45 million.
The Steve Martino-directed film, which is the sixth-biggest animated debut this year, opened above Fox’s internal estimate of $40 million, but below the $50M+ predictions of box office pundits. Many had expected a bigger opening due to the built-in awareness of the Peanuts brand and Fox’s marketing and promotional campaign, including an extensive digital campaign that is documented in this Deadline post.
But the film’s launch is in line for the Blue Sky brand. The studio’s last two films have opened under $40 million — Rio 2 ($39.3M) and Epic ($33.5M) — and its last Ice Age entry Continental Drift opened with $46.6M. Peanuts also matches the exact amount of Martino’s last adaptative film, Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who! which launched with $45M in 2008.