“Zootopia” is a beast at the box office.
The animated feature starring the voice talents of Jason Bateman, Ginnifer Goodwin and Idris Elba stampeded to a $73.7 million weekend opening, becoming the Walt Disney Studios’ biggest animated debut ever, according to estimates.
“Zootopia” topped previous record holder “The Lorax,” which opened with $70.2 million in 2012, and even iced “Frozen,” which had $67 million in 2013. Of course, “Frozen” went on to gross a massive $400 million domestically, and signs are “Zootopia” could hold its own:
1. Great Reviews
Lauded by critics as charming, family-friendly, topical and just plain entertaining, “Zootopia” has a 99 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes — and for a long time enjoyed a rare 100 percent rating until a couple of lukewarm reviews came in from Salt Lake City and the U.K.
2. Happy Audiences
Audiences obviously responded to the notices and word of mouth from overseas, where “Zootopia” opened last month. The movie also boasts an “A” CinemaScore from the opening day crowd, meaning the film could have the kind of legs that carried “Frozen,” which was still racking up big numbers after months in theaters.
3. Overseas Moviegoers Love It
Now in its fourth week in international release, “Zootopia” has collected $158.8 million overseas and this weekend opened well in China — now rivaling the U.S. for movie business — with a healthy $24 million.
4. Disney’s Brand Power
“Zootopia” proves the Disney brand stands as much for quality animation today than it did during the Golden Era of “Snow White” and “Pinocchio,” joining such successes “Tangled,” “Wreck It Ralph” and “Frozen” to go along with the Pixar-Disney triumphs like “Inside Out.” Disney was able also to leverage its role as the studio behind “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” by adding the “Zootopia” trailer to almost every print of the blockbuster for the last two months.
Watch Made in Hollywood’s full interview with “Zootopia’s” Jason Bateman: