With Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment’s Minions having reached $990.2M globally last weekend, this milestone was to be expected. The little yellow fellows have now crossed $1B worldwide, with $682M coming from international and $321.9M in North America. This makes the Kyle Balda/Pierre Coffin-helmed pic the third-highest-grossing animated film of all time. Oh, and it sets another industry record for Universal: It is the first time any studio has had three films cross $1B at the worldwide box office in a single year. The Despicable Me spinoff joins Furious 7 and Jurassic World in that rarefied air.
Minions is Illumination’s highest-grossing film ever and the biggest animated film of 2015 at the worldwide box office. It takes that company, founded by Chris Meledandri and featuring a creative team that comes from 29 nationalities, to more than $3B worldwide for its five releases: Despicable Me, Hop, Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax, Despicable Me 2 and Minions. Despicable Me 2 just missed the $1B mark in 2013 with about $971M.
That film counted China is its grosses and Minions has yet to bow in the Middle Kingdom meaning further coin is afoot. It heads there on September 13. Italy released today and Turkey and Greece are still to go next month.
Other highlights of the henchmen’s accomplishments thus far include being the 23rd highest-grossing film of all time, the highest-grossing animated title in 11 territories, Universal’s top grosser in seven and the biggest animated movie ever in Latin America.
This is just the latest in a string of milestones set by Universal this year. This week, it surpassed North American box office grosses of $2.113B, setting a calendar-year record. Also this week, Universal Pictures International hit a gross of $3.78B in offshore box office, setting a new industry record for the highest-grossing year ever.