The Pixar movie is enjoying one of the biggest launches of all time for an animated pic; French director Luc Besson’s ‘Anna’ bombs.
Pixar and Disney’s critically acclaimed Toy Story 4 easily topped the Friday box office with a first-day take of $47.4 million from 4,575 theaters.
That puts the family tentpole on course to earn $125 million — give or take — or more for the weekend. That would represent the third-best domestic launch of all time for an animated pic behind fellow Pixar titles Incredibles 2 ($183 million) and Finding Dory ($135 million).
Heading into the frame, pre-release tracking had suggested Toy Story 4 could climb to $140 million-$165 million in North America. Either way, the movie is a needed win for the summer box office after a series of stumbles. And it’s also only the third release of 2019 to cross $100 million so far.
Toy Story 4 is also opening in numerous foreign markets timed to its U.S. launch. It’s Wednesday-Friday haul overseas is $38.3 million.
Toy Story 4, directed by Josh Cooley, sports a stellar 98 percent freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes, as well as earning an A CinemaScore from audiences. Its lengthy list of A-list voice talent sees the return of Tom Hanks as Woody, Tim Allen as Buzz Lightyear and Annie Potts as Bo Peep (a character who was absent from Toy Story 3).
New toys include the conflicted Forky (Tony Hale), the doll Gabby Gabby (Christina Hendricks), the comedic duo Bunny and Ducky (Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key, respectively) and stunt motorbike rider Duke Caboom (Keanu Reeves).
Coming in No. 2 behind Toy Story 4 is United Artists’ Child’s Play. A remake of the 1988 film about a menacing doll named Chucky, the R-rated horror pic earned $6.1 million on Friday from 3,007 locations for a solid $15.2 million domestic bow.
Mark Hamill and Aubrey Plaza star in Child’s Play. The film has a 60 percent freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes, while receiving a C+ CinemaScore from moviegoers.
The prospects for Anna, the weekend’s third new nationwide offering, are grim. Directed by Luc Besson and released in the U.S. by Lionsgate/Summit, the crime thriller earned an estimated $1.4 million on Friday from 2,114 cinemas for a projected weekend debut of $3 million, putting it at No. 11.
That would mark the worst nationwide opening of Besson’s career. Ditto for actors Helen Mirren and Luke Evans, who star opposite newcomer Sasha Luss. Those who did show up to see Anna gave it a B+ CinemaScore.
Anna’s release was put on hold last year when Belgian-Dutch actress Sand Van Roy filed a complaint in May accusing Besson of drugging and raping her. The Paris prosecutor’s office later dismissed the rape charges. In between, five more women came forward in a French magazine alleging sexual misconduct against Besson.
Among holdovers, Disney’s Aladdin is holding at No. 3 in its fifth weekend, while Sony’s Men in Black: International is falling to No. 4 in its sophomore outing. Illumination and Universal’s The Secret Life of Pets 2, now in its third weekend, will likely round out the top five.