As expected, Universal/Illumination’s The Grinch launched at the top of the U.S./Canada box office with an estimated $66 million. It’s the first no. 1 launch for an animated film since last July when Sony’s Hotel Transylvania 3 opened in the top spot.
The Grinch, directed by Yarrow Cheney and Scott Mosier, is the biggest opening ever for a Christmas-themed movie. The previous title holder was Ron Howard’s live-action version of the same story, the Jim Carrey-starring How the Grinch Stole Christmas, which opened with $55.1M on its way to $260M.
While The Grinch is on the low end of Ilumination openings, it’s the key holiday family film this season and it’s supported by a promotional partner campaign valued at $80M, so expect it to have a strong run through the holiday season.