Disney’s ‘Finding Dory’ is a hit at the box office — but everyone already knew it would be.
According to Saturday’s estimates, the film is headed for a $140 million opening after grossing a whopping $55 million on Friday alone.
“Dory” will demolish the nine-year-old record for best domestic animated opening, set by “Shrek the Third” in 2007 with $121.6 million. “Minions” was the second largest at $115.7 million, followed by Disney/Pixar’s “Toy Story 3” with $110 million.
At $140 million, “Dory” will rank as the 17th largest domestic opener of all time and the third largest of 2016. Marvel/Disney’s “Captain America: Civil War” had the year’s highest-grossing launch so far with $179 million, the fifth-largest debut of all time.
Recent estimates had placed the opening weekend for “Dory,” with Ellen DeGeneres voicing the forgetful tropical fish, in the $115 million range. So its apparent over-performance is a tonic to the movie business — which has slumped 18 percent during the summer season in the wake of expensive tentpoles such as “Warcraft,” “Alice Through the Looking Glass” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” delivering drab domestic returns.
Early indications show that Disney has a blockbuster that may perform as well as 2003’s original “Finding Nemo,” the fish tale of a father looking for his son, which grossed $936.7 million globally and won the Academy Award for best animated feature. “Finding Dory” will double the $70 million opening weekend of “Finding Nemo.”
Is anyone surprised?