disney 2019 box office

It’s no surprise that Disney owned the box office last year, but the extent to which the House of Mouse broke 2019 box office records is staggering. With four studios under their jurisdiction and a monopoly on nostalgia, the Walt Disney Company has had a historic, absurdly lucrative year. In 2019, Disney zoomed past box office milestones, earning 33% of all domestic box office grosses last year and becoming the first studio in history to cross the $10 billion mark globally. It was a banner year for Disney, but these new box office heights will probably be the highest the studio will reach, at least for a few more years.

We joked back when Disney made the historic acquisition of 21st Century Fox that it was time to welcome our pop culture overlords, and Disney is steadily turning that into a reality. The House of Mouse shattered all kinds of box office records last year with its impressive (or frightening, depending on how you look at it) domination of the domestic and international box office. Last year Disney earned 33% of all domestic box office grosses for the year. According to Comscore (via Variety), this is the first time since at least 1999 that a single studio has taken this much box office revenue in the U.S. and Canada. Domestically, Disney has shattered an all-time record, raking in $3.76 billion to date and $7.35 billion internationally (an all-time record), for a global take of $11.12 billion (you guessed it, an all-time record).

With the combined slate of Disney and Fox releases, that makes Disney’s overall global intake a whopping $13.15 billion. The company already made history in December 2019 by becoming the first studio in history to cross the $10 billion mark at the global box office. These numbers are unprecedented, and to be honest, a little frightening. But one positive, perhaps, is that we’ll likely never see a one-studio box office domination like this ever again.

Last year saw the indomitable slate of blockbusters from almost every division of the company, breaking the record for the most movies to surpass $1 billion worldwide in a calendar year, according to Variety. Those include Marvel Studios’ Captain Marvel ($1.13 billion) and Avengers: Endgame ($2.8 billion); Disney’s live-action remakes Aladdin ($1.05 billion) and The Lion King ($1.66 billion); Pixar’s Toy Story 4 ($1.07 billon); and Disney’s own Frozen II ($1.26 billion); and of course Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker at $815.7 million worldwide, and growing. Domestically, Disney dominated the top of the box office, with Disney taking the top 6 slots with Endgame, The Lion King, Toy Story 4, Frozen II, Captain Marvel, and The Rise of Skywalker. No. 7 was a Marvel co-produced film, Sony’s Spider-Man: Far From Home.

Of course, Disney had its share of “failures,” with Dumbo earning just $353.3 million worldwide and Maleficent: Mistress of Evil disappointing domestically (but still doing a healthy $490.4 million internationally). But there’s no question that Disney now owns the box office in way that no studio ever has, or will again — including the House of Mouse itself.

The next few years will see Disney’s separate divisions scaling back, the MCU returns with smaller, standalone films like Black Widow, Lucasfilm has put Star Wars films on hold until at least 2022, and Disney live-action remake fatigue has begun to set in. With Disney+ becoming the dumping ground for titles that Disney doesn’t want to take a chance with at the box office, it’s likely Disney will never reach those record-breaking heights of 2019 again. But I’m sure they’ll find other means to own our souls.

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