Zootopia roared into theaters this weekend with an estimated $73.7 million domestic opening, setting a new record for the biggest Walt Disney Animation Studios opening of all time.
The film surpassed Frozen’s record of $67.4 million to earn the biggest debut ever for a non-Pixar Disney animated film, and it also scored the fourth-highest March opening weekend in box office history. With The Hunger Games in first place with $152.5 million, followed by Alice in Wonderland and Oz the Great and Powerful, Disney now has three of the top four March openings.
Now in its fourth weekend of international release, Zootopia added another $63.4 million to its overseas total, bringing its worldwide cumulative gross to $158.8 million already. Globally, it grossed $8.5 million for the weekend on IMAX screens, and its $5.2 million domestic IMAX debut makes it the second-biggest animated opening in IMAX history, behind Toy Story 3’s $8.4 million.
Ginnifer Goodwin and Jason Bateman lent their voices to the PG-rated animated adventure, and Zootopia has been universally praised by critics for its messages about prejudice and tolerance, earning a 98 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes. That, coupled with its A CinemaScore, suggests that Zootopia should hold up well at the box office over the next few weeks.
Another new release took second place, with the R-rated action epic London Has Fallen debuting to $21.7 million and earning an A- CinemaScore. The original Olympus Has Fallen, also starring Gerard Butler and Morgan Freeman, opened in March 2013 to $30.4 million, going on to gross $98.9 million domestically.
Meanwhile, Tina Fey’s Whiskey Tango Foxtrot only debuted to an estimated $7.6 million for the weekend, well under expectations of a double-digit opening. Glenn Ficarra and John Requa’s war zone dramedy, based on the book by Kim Barker, earned a B CinemaScore. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot’s single-digit debut is similar to Admission, another Fey-starring drama that opened opposite Olympus Has Fallen in March 2013, earning $6.2 million.
Zootopia’s success finally knocked Deadpool from its throne, and the Ryan Reynolds-starring superhero pic fell to third place in its fourth weekend with an estimated $16.4 million. Deadpool just crossed $300 million at the domestic box office this weekend, bringing its domestic total to $311.2 million.
And Butler actually ended up with two films in the top five, as even though his swords-and-sandals epic Gods of Egypt fell 65 percent, its $5 million second weekend was enough to hold off the competition and secure fifth place. Gods of Egypt’s domestic total is now at $22.8 million.
At the specialty box office, Terrence Malick’s Knight of Cups opened in four theaters to $56,688.
Here are this weekend’s top five at the box office.
1. Zootopia — $73.7 million
2. London Has Fallen — $21.7
3. Deadpool — $16.4 million
4. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot — $7.6 million
5. Gods of Egypt — $5 million