Disney Becomes First Studio with Two $1 Billion+ Movies in Single Year

Proving yet again that the Mouse knows best, Disney’s Toy Story 3 is expected to cross the $1 billion mark worldwide today, Deadline reports. That would make Disney the first studio to ever have two films cross the $1B mark in the same year. If you’ll recall, Alice in Wonderland already hit that mark earlier with a global cume of $1.0243 billion.

Remember that both films were in 3D, and thus able to charge wallet-crippling prices. This no doubt led to the high box office totals while audiences showed overwhelming support for these particular 3D films. Other 3D experiments have largely flopped (see: Clash of the Titans or The Last Airbender).

Toy Story 3 is now the seventh highest-grossing film of all time – just behind The Dark Knight ($1.0019B). Alice ranks fifth, trailing Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest ($1.0662B).

Of course these all fall into the deep shadow cast by Avatar, which reopens in 3D theaters this weekend. Looking to pad it’s record-setting haul, Avatar has brought in $2.7404B thus far and should add millions more with this second release.

It’s enough to make you wish you went to film school isn’t it?

Here’s the Disney press release:

BURBANK, Calif. – August 27, 2010 – Two weeks after becoming the highest-grossing animated film of all time, Disney•Pixar’s Toy Story 3 will cross the $1 billion mark at the global box office today, joining Alice in Wonderland as the second $1 billion film this year from The Walt Disney Studios – the first studio in history to accomplish this feat. Disney first crossed the $1 billion threshold with Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest in 2006. Toy Story 3 becomes the only animated film to reach this milestone and the seventh title in industry history.

“It’s been an incredible year as we saw the Pixar team bring Buzz and Woody back to the big screen and watched Tim Burton’s vision for Alice in Wonderland take the world by storm,” said Rich Ross, Chairman, The Walt Disney Studios. “These box office triumphs prove that creative storytelling brought to life by imaginative, inspired and talented professionals is something audiences respond to the world over.”

As of Thursday (8/26/10), Toy Story 3 tallied more than $592.9 million internationally, Disney’s largest international animated release. Latin American audiences have contributed $138 million making Toy Story 3 the highest grossing Disney film ever released in the region. Toy Story 3 is the most successful UK release in Disney history and currently stands as the fourth biggest title in territory history with $102.4 million in box office receipts so far. In Japan, the film has taken in $111.2 million and spent five consecutive weeks as the #1 movie. Toy Story 3 currently ranks as the #7 film in global box office history and domestically ranks #9 with $404.6 million in receipts to date.

Alice in Wonderland began setting records during its opening weekend (March 5-7), becoming the biggest March opening in industry history, the highest 3D opening ever and The Walt Disney Studios’ biggest opening for a non-sequel film. Internationally, the film went on to tally more than $690 million, becoming Disney’s biggest overseas release of all time and the fourth biggest title ever released overseas. Worldwide, the film took in $1.0243 billion, ranking it as the #5 film in global box office history.

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