'Toy Story' spinoff debuts at No. 2 behind 'Jurassic World' as 'Top Gun' continues to soar

  • This image released by Disney/Pixar shows character Buzz Lightyear, voiced by Chris Evans, in a scene from the animated film "Lightyear," releasing June 17.

    This image released by Disney/Pixar shows character Buzz Lightyear, voiced by Chris Evans, in a scene from the animated film "Lightyear," releasing June 17. Associated Press

 
By LINDSEY BAHR
AP Film Writer
Updated 6/19/2022 11:30 PM

"Lightyear," Pixar's first major theatrical release since March 2020, blasted off with $51 million in its debut weekend in North America, according to studio estimates on Sunday.

Not only did it open lower than expected, but it also failed to conquer "Jurassic World: Dominion," which held on to the first-place spot with $58.7 million its second weekend.

 

It is a mixed bag for Disney and Pixar as " Lightyear," an origin story about the movie that inspired the space ranger action figure in the "Toy Story" movies, is one of the biggest launches for an animated family film over the pandemic. Including international showings, which grossed $34.6 million, "Lightyear's" global opening weekend totals to $85.6 million.

But expectations were higher for a release this high-profile and based on a beloved, well-known character. Going into the weekend, some analysts had pegged "Lightyear" for a $70 million domestic debut.

"Toy Story" launched Pixar in 1995 and its four films have made over $3 billion. "Toy Story 3" and "Toy Story 4" also both broke the $1 billion mark.

"There may have been a little confusion about whether it's just in theaters," analyst Paul Dergarabedian said. "This is a movie that is going to have to be marketed in real time as family audiences connect the dots."

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With a reported production budget of $200 million, which doesn't account for the millions spent on marketing and promotion, "Lightyear" has a long journey ahead of it to get to profitability. But it could also have a slow, steady burn over the summer. And it's the only big family offering playing in theaters until "Minions: The Rise of Gru" opens July 1.

"Jurassic World: Dominion," meanwhile, has now earned over $622.2 million worldwide with $259.2 million of that coming from U.S. and Canadian theaters. It's only the seventh movie released during the pandemic to surpass $600 million.

In its fourth weekend, "Top Gun: Maverick" dropped only slightly, bringing in an additional $44 million to take third place. Its domestic total is now at $466.2 million. Globally, the high-flying sequel has grossed over $885 million, the highest gross ever for a Tom Cruise vehicle.

Rounding out the top five are "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" with $4.2 million and "The Bob's Burgers Movie" with $1.1 million.

Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Comscore. Final domestic figures will be released today.

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