After three weeks in the international marketplace, Zootopia is finally opening in the United States this weekend to near-unanimous raves from both critics and audiences. The enthusiastic reception seems likely to propel the pic to a number of box office records, including the best ever for a Walt Disney Animation Studios film.
The current opening weekend record for a non-Pixar Disney animated film is held by Frozen, which opened nationally with $67.4 million in November 2013. Current projections for Zootopia are hovering between $70-80 million, which should easily unseat Frozen.
If the current numbers hold, the film also seems likely to break the record for a March animated film opening, which is currently held by Illumination’s The Lorax, which launched with $70.2 million in 2012.
Despite the strong opening weekend, Zootopia hasn’t become a cultural phenomenon (yet) in the same way that Frozen did, making it unlikely that Zootopia will top Frozen’s $400m domestic or $1.3 billion global gross.