“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” towered over box office charts with $377 million in global ticket sales, taking the title for the biggest worldwide debut of the year from “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” ($225.3 million).
The animated movie — a collaboration between Illumination, Nintendo and Universal — crushed already-high expectations, igniting to $173 million internationally and $204 million in its first five days at the domestic box office.
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“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” opened in 70 overseas territories, including Mexico ($27.4 million), the U.K. and Ireland ($19.6 million), Germany ($14 million), China ($12 million), France ($10.4 million), Spain ($8.6 million) and Australia ($8.3 million).
With those ticket sales, “Mario” landed several overseas records, including the best international debut of the year (overtaking “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” with $117.1 million) and second-biggest animated opening of all time (behind “Frozen 2” with $228.2 million). It also scored the biggest animated opening in 11 individual markets, as well as the best start for a video game adaptation in 42 individual markets.
“It’s a phenomenal number all around,” says Veronika Kwan Vandenberg, president of distribution for Universal Pictures International. “The film is based on incredible IP, which is beloved by people of different generations– young and old. This is great news for the industry.”
In addition to brand recognition and nostalgia for the popular video game, the film benefitted from positive word-of-mouth, premium theatrical formats and a months-long lack of movies targeted at family audiences.
“Mario” particularly delivered in Imax, bringing in $5 million overseas and $21.6 million globally. Those ticket sales rank as the highest animated debut ever for the company in 22 markets, including Ireland and the UK, Germany, Sweden and Netherlands.
“llumination and Universal did an excellent job launching this new franchise, building on the great momentum we’re seeing at the global box office as a very promising summer blockbuster season approaches,” says Imax CEO Rich Gelfond.
“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” features the voices of Chris Pratt as Mario, Charlie Day as Luigi, Anya Taylor-Joy as Princess Peach and Jack Black as Bowser. Directed by Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic, the story follows the mustachioed plumber and friends as they prepare to stop the all-powerful King Koopa from world domination.
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