Despite the underwhelming box office grosses of several big budgeted films, Summer 2013 (May-August) set a new record with $4.76 billion, up 11 percent from last year’s Summer gross receipts. The previous record was established in Summer 2011 with $4.4 billion. The record-setting feat was largely due to the stellar performance of monster movie franchises, prequels and reboots – Iron Man 3, Despicable Me 2, Fast & Furious 6, Star Trek Into Darkness, Monsters University, and Man of Steel.
Interestingly, two of the highest-grossing films of the Summer (and possibly the entire year) were animated films that cater to young audiences: Despicable Me 2 and Monsters University. The combined box office earnings of both films was a staggering $600 million domestically ($1.5 billion worldwide). Other animated films paled in comparison, barely hitting the $330 million mark in combined domestic earnings.
Here’s how the animated films fared in the box office race:
1. Despicable Me 2
Production Budget: $76 million
Despicable Me 2 held its own against frontrunner Iron Man 3, making the minions-powered sequel the highest grossing movie ever for Universal.
2. Monsters University
Production Budget: n/a
Monsters University did better than its predecessor (Monsters Inc.), but not a lot. It cemented its hold in the box office, making it the fourth highest grossing film from Pixar.
Production Budget: $100 million
Epic did not live up to its title and failed miserably. Even a generally positive review could not save the film from recouping its $100 million budget.
Production Budget: $135 million
Turbo failed to gather steam, no thanks to DreamWorks’ poor scheduling. The movie opened just weeks after Despicable Me 2 and Monsters University. Garden snail, anyone?
Production Budget: $50 million
Planes fared a little better considering it had the lowest budget in the list, but it was panned by the critics for its inferior plot and jokes that often fall flat.
6. The Smurfs 2
Production Budget: $105 million
Audiences decided that the novelty of the blue creatures had worn off after the first Smurfs movie. The sequel failed to duplicate the magic of the first and the nostalgia factor no longer worked.
(Figures taken from Box Office Mojo)