It’s July and Disney is already having its biggest year ever at the box office. As of this week, Disney’s company-wide box office gross is $7.67 billion. That’s higher than its previous best year ever, which was 2016 when it earned $7.61 billion. Again, that was over a full 12-month calendar year. Disney surpassed that total this year in less than seven months, and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is still on the horizon.
Disney managed the feat by having five of the top six highest-grossing movies of the year worldwide. One of those films made over $2 billion, two others made over $1 billion, and those last two are close to also making $1 billion each.
Avengers: Endgame is the highest earner with $2.793 billion worldwide. Captain Marvel is the second-highest grossing movie of the year with $1.128 billion. Sony claims the third-place spot with Spider-Man: Far From Home (the first $1 billion Spider-Man movie which, uncoincidentally, takes place in the same universe as Endgame and Captain Marvel). Then Disney comes back onto the list with the next three films: the live-action remakes of Aladdin ($1.009 billion) and The Lion King ($962.7 billion) and Pixar’s latest film, Toy Story 4 ($917.9 billion). In addition to being this year’s top-grossing film, Avengers: Endgame also surpassed Avatar to become the highest-grossing movie of all time.
There’s some debate in the film community over what Disney’s box office dominance means. Some see one company holding this much influence as a problem, especially as it continues to buy out companies with valuable intellectual properties. It purchased Marvel in 2009, Lucasfilm — the home of Star Wars and Indiana Jones — in 2012, and 20th Century Fox — the studio behind Avatar, the X-Men movies, Aliens, Predator, Planet of the Apes, and others — in 2019.
Others see Disney as the only company capable that has continued to put audiences into seats at a time when movie theaters are struggling. As such, they feel the behemoth company should be allowed to do as it sees fit.
Either way, Disney’s box office dominance seems unlikely to end anytime soon. It has at least six more Star Wars movies in the developmental stages, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Phases 4 and 5 to look forward to, plans to relaunch Indiana Jones, a slate of Avatar sequels, and more animated remakes and Pixar films on the way.
How do you feel about Disney’s box office dominance this year so far? Let us know what you think about it in the comments section.