It’s becoming seemingly common nowadays for films to have an unexpectedly long lives in overseas box offices, and nowhere is that more evident than this latest news concerning two of this year’s animated films.
Animation World Network reported that The Nut Job has recently inched past the $100 million dollar mark, quietly amassing $42 million in overseas markets for a worldwide total of $107 million. The Nut Job had already been a commercial success prior to this, having raked in $25.7 million in it’s North American debut, the biggest opening for an independent animated film, and despite being one of the worst-reviewed films of the year (Its Rotten Tomatoes rating sits at 10%), it already has a sequel set for January 15, 2016. What’s more, there are several international markets where the film has yet to open, which could further illustrate the film’s surprising staying power.
Another similar case, albeit with more uncertain ramifications, is Planes:Fire & Rescue. In spite of prior reports of the film’s sub-par performance domestically, its overseas earnings have jumped in recent time, with a current total of $80 million adding up to a worldwide gross of $138 million. However, this news arrives long after the damage had been done due to the film’s domestic earnings. DisneyToon Studios recently had to lay off 17 employees, drastically reducing their workforce, placing them on very shaky ground for the near future. While the news no doubt comes as major relief for DisneyToon, it’s clear that they are in need of a new game plan if they want to stay in business.
Say what you will about the films themselves, it’s really just more evidence of animated films managing to carve out a long life in overseas markets. Of course, how that life will benefit the studios in the process will ultimately depend on the film itself.
What do you think? Are you surprised by these developments?