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2019 a box office record for Disney

Avengers: Endgame is the highest-grossing film of all time helping Disney to a record box office of almost US $8 billion so far this year.

Disney’s Avengers: Endgame is now the highest-grossing film of all time and with four months left in the year its looking like a record  one all round for the film and  entertainment company.

Disney says Avengers 4  earned US $2.79 billion at the global box office through July 21, topping Avatar’s record of $2.78 billion set in 2009 and 2010.

Disney acquired Fox Studios earlier this year so now owns Avatar and its upcoming slate of sequels. Disney owns the Avengers franchise through the 2009  purchase of Marvel Studios.

In related news today, the Hollywood Reporter  noted that Disney (NYSE:DIS) has already collected  US $7.67B at the 2019 global box office, beating its previous annual record of $7.61B in 2016.

The $7.67B figure includes $5.09B of overseas revenue. Still to come from Disney this year are the animated Frozen 2 and Christmas release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

snow white
Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was first screened in 1937. Credit: Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment

As reported by Forbes, the big factor in Endgame passing Avatar was its huge gross in China. The movie earned US $679 million in the United States, another $359 million in China and $2.048 billion worldwide.

Avengers: Endgame has also drawn critical acclaim.  Reviewers have called the film such things as “glorious,” “irresistible” and “intensely satisfying.” Its score on Rotten Tomatoes  which aggregates film reviews is 94% positive by critics and 91% by audiences.

Disney’s success with these titles is an example of its enduring brand power. In any market, language and currency, the movies resonate with audiences. Audiences know they will get original, animated creations, with family-friendly, uplifting messages and leave the theatre feeling good.  The consistency encourages loyalty.

The biggest Disney blockbuster, adjusted for inflation is Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs which was first released in 1937, more than 80 years ago. Snow White has been released many times since and continues to attract viewers.

Snow White was Disney’s first full-length animated film and a great risk when it was released. It was an instant critical and commercial success.

Disney’s top five grossing films including Snow White are: Star Wars: The Force Awakens  in 2015; 101 Dalmations, first released in 1961, The Lion King, in 1994 and Fantasia in 1940.

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Adam Mayers writes about investing and personal finance. He is a contributor to the Globe & Mail’s Globe Advisor and a contributing editor to Gordon Pape's Internet Wealth Builder newsletter. Adam was Business Editor and investment columnist at The Toronto Star and is the author of six books.

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