As of this morning, the anticipated opening for Disney’s live-action take of Beauty and the Beast is looking absolutely gorgeous with tracking easily indicating a three-day weekend of $100M when it twirls into theaters on March 17 with projections from various sources busting past $120M.
Arguably, Disney began rebooting live action fairy tales in its canon with Alice in Wonderland which opened to $116.1M in March 2010 (and finaled at $334.1M). That Tim Burton directed movie now stands as March’s third highest opening of all-time and it wouldn’t be a surprise if Beauty and the Beast beat it. Among all movies, Warner Bros.’ Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice holds the opening record for March at $166M.
Beauty and the Beast is obviously huge with females, but it’s poised to play across all demos. Remember, the animated 1991 film was nominated for a Best Picture at the Oscars, which was and still remains an anomaly for an animated movie. Per one set of tracking there’s a 90% total awareness (huge), 15% unaided (whenever that’s in the double digits at that level — that’s huge), 20% first choice (ditto, like unaided awareness) and 56% definite interest.
Advance tickets sales kicked off with a trailer debut during The Bachelor on Jan. 30 and immediately topped Fandango’s pre-sales. We hear Beauty and the Beast has the advance sales-intensity normally seen on superhero tentpoles. And buzz among exhibitors who’ve seen the movie is through the roof. Disney’s live action fairy tales have become a box office cornerstone for the studio in the wake of Alice grossing $3.57 billion across five movies: Alice in Wonderland and its sequel last year, The Jungle Book, Cinderella and Maleficent.
Beauty and the Beast is the #3 most anticipated film of 2017 in Fandango’s annual survey behind only Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. The first trailer in November clocked more than 127M views in the first 24 hours, while the teaser in May reached 92M over the same time frame. Both trailers outstripped the corresponding Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer at similar points in time. The most recent trailer has been viewed over 100M times.
Relish Mix reports that the viral video rate for Beauty and the Beast materials on social are at a rate of 48:1 –enormous– considering most successful tentpoles clock in the 20:1 range. Pic’s social media universe across Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube stands at 522M to Logan‘s 287M and DreamWorks Animation’s The Baby Boss‘ 196M.
On Monday, Beauty and the Beast director Bill Condon, composer Alan Menken kicked off the film’s world tour in Paris.