Box Office Predictions: “Frozen 2”

Even with Maleficent 2 performing below expectations domestically, Disney is still well on its way to the greatest year at the box office by any film studio ever. Thus far, the studio broke its own record for highest global box office in a year with over $8 billion to date, trouncing its 2016 haul of $7.6 billion. Hovering close to $8.5 billion now, Disney is looking at a total global box office for the year of $11 billion or more, aka over $3 billion more than previously accomplished. Plus, with the release of this week’s Frozen 2, DIsney will attempt to break its domestic box office set last year, all before it even releases its final film of the year, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

In any other year, Frozen 2 would have a pretty easy claim to being Walt Disney Studios’ most anticipated movie of the year, or at least in the running for it. However, with Avengers: Endgame destroying records and anticipation for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker building by the day, Frozen 2 has almost been lost in the shuffle, especially with Disney Plus’ debut last week garnering a lot of attention. In a way, it’s hard to believe that the film is coming out already, but boom it’s here and I can’t wait to see it.

Currently, industry expectations for Frozen 2 are somewhere north of $100 million opening weekend, but where it actually falls is anybody’s guess because once you get past $100 million it can get a little harder to come up with a more exact estimate. Just look at Toy Story 4 earlier this year, which was tracking in the $150 million range and barely topped $120 million in its opening frame. Another reason that it’s harder to get a grasp on how the film will perform is because of how much of a phenomenon the first film was, but also the fact that many people grew tired of it. Personally, I think families will rule the day here and the film’s current 78% Rotten Tomatoes score as well as the fact that it is the top animated preseller of all-time, will help propel it to success.

With all of that in mind, I’m predicting a total weekend box office of $115.7 million for Frozen 2.

Via AB Posters

With the total weekend prediction handled, let’s take a closer look at how I think Frozen 2 will fare each day of the weekend. To help with my predictions, I looked at some other highly anticipated Disney reimaginings and sequels, as well as the original film.

I really contemplated about whether I should include Frozen in this group because truth be told, it’s not the best idea to use comps from more than roughly three years ago.The film also had its wide release starting on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, so it will play differently than a traditional Friday release, but I did feel it should at least be there visually, so there you go. I felt that The Lion King was an apt comparison to Frozen 2 because both of the original films outperformed everyone’s wildest expectations. The Incredibles 2 is another good comp for Frozen 2 because it was the follow up to a much-loved animated film, though its fourteen year difference from the first to the second left a lot more room for nostalgia than Frozen’s six year gap. Finally, we come to the live-action reimagining of Beauty and the Beast. Similarly to The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast brought the characters from this beloved Animated Classic to life years later, but the real reason that I like it as a comp is its release date during the school year in March because many schools still have class Monday, which will affect the Sunday evening gross for that film and Frozen 2.

Day

Frozen

The Lion King

The Incredibles 2

Beauty and the Beast

Average

Change

%Gross

Change

%Gross

Change

%Gross

Change

%Gross

Change

%Gross

Friday

39.83%

40.64%

39.01%

36.50%

38.99%

Saturday

-5.58%

37.61%

-21.72%

31.81%

-17.35%

32.24%

-1.68%

35.88%

-11.58%

34.39%

Sunday

-39.99%

22.57%

-13.40%

27.55%

-10.80%

28.76%

-23.03%

27.62%

-21.81%

26.62%

Just like it was hard to figure out where Frozen 2 might ultimately end up this weekend, it was also difficult to make heads or tails of the comps this week with Frozen and Beauty and the Beast playing much differently than The Lion King and The Incredibles 2. The latter two both skewed to slightly older audiences and had healthy Thursday night preview grosses, which boosted their Friday numbers. Frozen’s Friday was the day after Thanksgiving when people typically don’t have work, so if we are looking at the best comp in day to day changes, I think Frozen 2 will end up playing closest to Beauty and the Beast and typical family films that don’t drop too heavily from Friday to Saturday.

Putting all that together, I foresee Frozen 2 opening to $42.7 million for 36.92% of the opening weekend, so right near the Beauty and the Beast percentage. On Saturday, I’m expecting a decrease of 4%, to $41.0 million, 35.44% of the total weekend box office. It’s a bit higher than Beauty and the Beast, which is fair because that film’s drop was lower than can be expected. Finally, I see Sunday dropping 22% to $31.0 million, 27.64% of the weekend box office.

Overall, I have no idea what to expect from Frozen 2 this weekend. I could see it going anywhere from $100-150 million and won’t be surprised with anywhere it may land. We’ll have to check in on Monday and see how it did.

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