There has never been such a lucrative combination of movie studio and year as Disney in 2016. Among the highlights of Disney’s international and global box office achievements were:
- 2016 was Disney’s best calendar year ever at the overseas box office, with $4.604 billion. This beat the previous industry overseas record, set by Universal in 2015 with $4.44 billion.
- Disney claimed the top three highest-grossing films released overseas, as well as six of the top 10. Captain America: Civil War led with $745.2 million, followed by Zootopia with $682.5 million, and The Jungle Book with $602.5 million.
- Other overseas hits included No. 7 Finding Dory with $541.9 million, No. 8 Rogue One with $517.1 million as of this writing ($361 million during the calendar year), and No. 10 Doctor Strange with $438.1 million as of this writing ($427.9 million during the calendar year).
- In addition, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which debuted in December 2015, brought in $452.4 million of its $1.131 billion international total during calendar year 2016.
- With $3.566 billion overseas through October 16, it only took Disney nine and a half months to surpass their previous yearly overseas record of $3.565 billion, set in 2015.
- On July 6, Disney set a new industry record for reaching the $3 billion threshold internationally.
- 2016 was also Disney’s best calendar year ever at the global box office, with $7.605 billion. This broke the previous record of $6.89 billion, set by Universal in 2015. It also beat Disney’s previous record of $5.844 billion, set in 2015.
- Disney claimed all of the top five highest-grossing films released in 2016 globally. Captain America: Civil War led with $1.153 billion, followed by Rogue One with $1.042 billion as of this writing ($801.9 million during the calendar year), Finding Dory with $1.028 billion, Zootopia with $1.023 billion, and The Jungle Book with $966 million.
- Also big hits globally were No. 11 Doctor Strange with $670.1 million as of this writing ($658.3 million during the calendar year) and No. 12 Moana with $555 million as of this writing ($410 million during the calendar year).
- On July 10, Disney set a new industry record for reaching $5 billion globally.
Although the award is bestowed for achievement at the overseas and global box office, Disney shattered a few records domestically as well.
- Disney set a new record for any studio with $3.0009 billion domestically during the calendar year, literally crossing over the $3 billion mark on December 31 itself. This shattered the previous record of $2.444 billion, set by Universal in 2015. Only three times before had any studio even reached the $2 billion mark: Universal and Disney both in 2015, plus Warner Bros. in 2009.
- Disney earned 26.3 percent of domestic market share during the calendar year, a modern record. Not only was this far ahead of the 16.7 percent earned by the runner-up studio Warner Bros, but the next-closest any studio had come to matching Disney’s 26.3 percent of market share during the 21st century was Universal taking 21.3 percent in 2015.
- Disney produced eight of the top 13 highest-grossing films during calendar year 2016, including all of the top three. They also produced seven of the top 13 films released in 2016 (when factoring grosses into 2017).
- The top three films were led by Rogue One with $524.8 million as of this writing ($408.2 million during the calendar year). This was followed by Finding Dory with $486.2 million, and Captain America: Civil War with $408 million.
- Disney produced a number of other hits domestically. These included No. 5 The Jungle Book with $364 million, No. 7 Zootopia with $341.2 million, No. 11 Moana with $242.1 million as of this writing ($206.4 million during the calendar year), and No. 13 Doctor Strange with $231.9 million as of this writing ($229.8 million during the calendar year).
Can the magic repeat itself? Disney looks to—if not exceed or replicate their monster 2016—come relatively close in 2017. Among their most anticipated releases are December’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, May’s action sequels Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, March’s live-action Beauty and the Beast, November’s superhero sequel Thor: Ragnarok, and two Pixar releases in the form of June’s Cars 3 and November’s Coco.