Weekend Box Office

Weekend Box Office: The Lion King Brings The July Heat With Record $185 Million

Let's just say Disney had a very good weekend.

by | July 21, 2019 | Comments

Last week the yearly box office fell behind the past four years with a margin of 9.1% down from the record-breaking year of 2018. Well, like Jurassic World before it, never count out the nostalgia of new parents and never count out the box office when it comes to big spectacles like The Lion KingIt just became the biggest July opener of all-time and this weekend’s top 10 represents one of the best July weekends in box office history.


The Lion King of the Crop: $185 Million Grubbed Up

(Photo by Disney)

Tracking services hit it right on the nose as Lion King hauled in $185 million. That is the 9th highest opening weekend in film history and the best ever in the month of July beating the 2011 record set by the $169.1 million of the final Harry Potter chapter. Disney now owns 12 of the top 13 openings of all-time with that pesky Jurassic World stuck right in the middle of their cash buffet. None of those 12 other films grossed less than $400 million and The Lion King is not going anywhere anytime soon.

Audiences appear to love it while critics are pretty split with a 55% on the Tomatometer. Even if they do have LARF (Live-Action-Reimagining-Fatigue) in a year that has already seen Dumbo (46%) and Aladdin (56%), these are the same critics who gave Jon Favreau’s CGI-enhanced remake of The Jungle Book a 94%. So it’s still all in the execution. But it will be left up to moviegoers across the world to determine whether it can make the $1.347 billion necessary to earn a spot in the all-time top 10. After three days of domestic release and 10 globally, The Lion King has grossed $531 million so far, the 7th best total of 2019.


The Record Has Fallen: Avengers: Endgame Beats Avatar

(Photo by Marvel Studios)

In 1975 it was Steven Spielberg and Jaws. Two years later it was George Lucas and Star Wars. 1982 comes along and Spielberg regains the throne with E.T.  In 1993 Spielberg replaces himself with Jurassic Park. The next phenomenon in 1997-98 was Titanic. Cameron then pulled a Spielberg and Avatar bested Titanic in 2009-10. Three directors have held the box office record for 44 years. This weekend two more joined the fray as Anthony and Joe Russo’s Avengers: Endgame passed Avatar as the highest grossing film in the world of all time. The film was $37 million away from the record when Endgame was re-issued into theaters with some additional material. The final numbers were not out this weekend when Kevin Feige made the announcement that there was a new no. 1 during Marvel’s panel at the San Diego Comic-Con Saturday night. As of Sunday, Avengers: Endgame has grossed an estimated $854.21 million domestic and $2.790 billion worldwide. When the final estimates come in on Monday, Avengers: Endgame will officially take its place in history.


Top 10 and Beyond: Far From Home Close To Record

Spider-Man: Far From Home
(Photo by © Columbia Pictures / © Marvel Studios/ Courtesy Everett Collection)

Spider-Man: Far From Home made $21 million over the weekend, and is estimated to be at $319.7 million overall. That’s $24 million ahead of the pace of Sam Raimi’s 2002 origin tale, which is still the only Spider-Man film to cross the $400 million line. Far From Home has grossed $889.5 million worldwide, over $9 million more than Spider-Man: Homecoming made in its entire run and less than $2 million behind Spider-Man 3 which is the highest-grossing Spidey film ever. Until Monday.

Toy Story 4 is at $374.3 million as of Sunday after a $13.4 million weekend. One full month into release. That is the 20th highest in history, just ahead of Captain Marvel’s $373.8 million. Disney’s Aladdin also just passed the 1994 Lion King for its spot on the all-time worldwide chart after this weekend’s $3.8 million weekend. It is now 40th all-time with $988 million with a billion dollars in its sights.

As for last week’s releases, Crawl looks like it will outgross Lake Placid’s 1999 haul of $31.7 million, suggesting a final haul around $35-$38 million. That along with a few international dollars will be enough to get the $13.5 million production into profit. The same cannot be said for Stuber which is actually on about the same track as Midsommar, both between $15.9 and $16.1 million after 10 days. Midsommar is up to $22.48 million in its third weekend and both are headed in the realm of $25 million each. Danny Boyle’s Yesterday could now be headed north of $70 million, after this weekend’s haul of $5.1 million.

Keeping an eye on what has potential to be the indie success story of the summer, Lulu Wang’s The Farewell was expanded into 35 theaters by A24 and grossed $1.17 million. That puts the film in league with The Kids Are All Right ($1.06 million / 38 theaters), The Favourite ($1.07 / 34), Boyhood ($1.17 / 34), and Lady Bird ($1.19 / 37).


This Time Last Year: Sequels….Here We Go Again!

(Photo by © Sony Pictures Releasing)

There was a close race for the top spot at the box office but Denzel Washington in The Equalizer 2 edged out Mamma Mia!: Here We Go Again $36.01 to $34.95 million. Another sequel, Unfriended: Dark Web, barely made the top 10, making $3.65 million for a ninth-place finish. Even the race for the middle was decided by less than a million between Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom ($11.26 million), Skyscraper ($11.36 million), and Incredibles 2 ($11.89 million). The top 10 films grossed $157.37 million and averaged 67.4% on the Tomatometer. This year’s top 10 grossed an estimated $245.28 million and averaged 69.3%. That total ranks as the third best top 10 weekend ever in July. It is behind only July 18-20, 2008 ($250.97 million) when The Dark Knight ruled and July 15-17, 2011 when the previous singular July record-holder (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2) helped charge the top 10 to $248.55 million.


On the Vine: The Return of Quentin Tarantino

(Photo by © Sony Pictures Releasing)
QT takes audiences to a temporal junction point of change in this country and the film industry with Once Upon a Time…In Hollywood, going back 50 years to a time of moon landings, summers of love, and the Manson murders. It is currently at 92% on the Tomatometer, which is tied with the filmmaker’s highest-scored effort to date, 1994’s Oscar-winning Pulp Fiction.

The Full Top 10: Jul 19-21

  1. The Lion King (2019) 53% – $185.00 million ($185.00 million total)
  2. Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) 91%$21.00 million ($319.65 million total)
  3. Toy Story 4 (2019) 97%$14.60 million ($375.53 million total)
  4. Crawl (2019) 83%$6.00 million ($23.83 million total)
  5. Yesterday (2019) 63%$5.10 million ($57.59 million total)
  6. Stuber (2019) 41%$4.00 million ($16.08 million total)
  7. Aladdin (2019) 57%$3.80 million ($340.04 million total)
  8. Annabelle Comes Home (2019) 65%$2.66 million ($22.48 million total)
  9. Midsommar (2019) 83%$1.59 million ($18.40 million total)
  10. The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) 60%$1.53 million ($151.55 million total)

Erik Childress can be heard each week evaluating box office on WGN Radio with Nick Digilio as well as on Business First AM with Angela Miles and his Movie Madness Podcast.

[box office figures via Box Office Mojo]


Like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get more features, news, and guides in your inbox every week.

Tag Cloud

Trophy Talk Amazon Studios Writers Guild of America Star Wars The CW stand-up comedy Film Festival politics LGBT Spike Shondaland Disney Channel National Geographic Mystery TCM American Society of Cinematographers TCA Rock E! theme song Photos WarnerMedia A24 Chilling Adventures of Sabrina independent Endgame DirecTV period drama Ovation NYCC green book justice league OWN revenge USA Classic Film disaster romantic comedy Apple TV Plus FOX name the review south america serial killer Paramount Network cancelled TV shows joker aliens TNT crime drama Pixar X-Men space reboot casting RT History documentary social media award winner Awards transformers Epix true crime crime thriller movie Captain marvel Arrowverse Nominations Mudbound Shudder movies technology 2017 HBO Max Election Martial Arts Valentine's Day Sundance Now dramedy Interview golden globes singing competition animated Comedy scary movies Grammys renewed TV shows spinoff political drama Action cars Fox News cancelled TV series Box Office hist Academy Awards Thanksgiving supernatural Disney streaming service A&E Pride Month teaser discovery cults anime Baby Yoda Comedy Central werewolf Disney+ Disney Plus FX on Hulu nature Animation Netflix San Diego Comic-Con YouTube 20th Century Fox video TBS kids zombie Cosplay series First Reviews Certified Fresh Mary poppins DC Comics The Purge DC Universe Ellie Kemper Tomatazos dceu TIFF Superheroes composers Best and Worst Binge Guide Pop crime E3 thriller Lifetime Rocky hispanic Bravo Biopics Showtime Apple Freeform RT21 Ghostbusters ghosts natural history Brie Larson Podcast Holiday Discovery Channel Red Carpet Heroines 2018 The Arrangement FX Emmy Nominations psychological thriller Horror psycho SDCC Spectrum Originals CMT GoT Set visit comic Emmys biography Creative Arts Emmys Extras Stephen King Winter TV Toys El Rey Quiz Schedule ratings Netflix Christmas movies Trivia indie Paramount anthology The Witch TruTV Comic Book Chernobyl AMC Calendar Musicals elevated horror YA Fall TV cooking 21st Century Fox DC streaming service DGA Travel Channel Music Turner cats reviews BBC America spain dc Columbia Pictures strong female leads streaming harry potter Summer 24 frames Disney zombies ABC 2020 screen actors guild Awards Tour Esquire BET Hallmark Christmas movies Holidays Family Women's History Month spider-man 2019 children's TV Television Academy MTV 007 mockumentary Super Bowl Reality Competition based on movie Crunchyroll MCU Polls and Games dogs Country Mindy Kaling BBC cartoon CBS All Access adventure President Sneak Peek YouTube Premium Western Sundance TV Pirates Premiere Dates SundanceTV Nickelodeon sag awards Marvel Peacock slashers sports Black Mirror Musical Cannes toy story Syfy Amazon Prime blaxploitation game of thrones SXSW romance Lucasfilm robots zero dark thirty spanish language Food Network Apple TV+ dragons talk show Britbox directors science fiction binge Drama Mary Poppins Returns finale screenings sitcom Tumblr Adult Swim 45 Lionsgate crossover Turner Classic Movies halloween APB Dark Horse Comics First Look comics mutant Amazon Acorn TV TLC IFC Films Superheroe WGN New York Comic Con OneApp NBC Pop TV Countdown Vudu 2016 television witnail Elton John Logo sequel Anna Paquin richard e. Grant Character Guide Walt Disney Pictures FXX Mary Tyler Moore Rom-Com Marvel Television TV renewals Christmas spy thriller The Walking Dead cancelled Hulu diversity USA Network Sundance Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt tv talk HBO Lifetime Christmas movies Disney Plus Rocketman Spring TV Infographic PaleyFest CBS Kids & Family war cinemax game show cops Year in Review travel cancelled television ITV Fantasy VICE Tarantino Tubi police drama foreign vampires docudrama doctor who Marvel Studios Winners Crackle GIFs Sci-Fi LGBTQ See It Skip It Teen CW Seed comiccon book Film Song of Ice and Fire batman universal monsters blockbuster VH1 GLAAD historical drama TCA 2017 Funimation free movies History Amazon Prime Video Pet Sematary Nat Geo PBS MSNBC facebook Opinion versus miniseries TV franchise festivals Sony Pictures unscripted what to watch IFC medical drama Universal rotten movies we love CNN Reality Video Games canceled TV shows Star Trek canceled Starz ABC Family 71st Emmy Awards breaking bad Avengers ESPN Comics on TV 2015 Black History Month quibi Oscars Warner Bros. YouTube Red jamie lee curtis TCA Winter 2020 Masterpiece Watching Series christmas movies adaptation Trailer Marathons TV Land latino Cartoon Network boxoffice Hallmark