Pixar Animation Studios
Finding Nemo Now at $228.5M

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By PinzaTodd
June 25, 2003

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Pixar/Disney's Finding Nemo had an excellent week and weekend, well ahead of the usual 35% decline from the same period a week ago. This weekend saw a decline of just 25.5% from last weekend, according to Box Office Mojo.
New arrival The Hulk led the charts all weekend, with Finding Nemo a distant second for the first time in its box office run (Finding Nemo led 20 of its first 21 days in release). Finding Nemo only lost 21 of its 3425 theaters, which is also excellent for its fourth weekend.

Next weekend will see only Charlie's Angels 2 as a significant box office debut, which may not result in a big reduction in theaters for Finding Nemo.

Projecting forward, if Finding Nemo sees a 35% drop-off in box office receipts during the coming week, a very conservative number for this film so far, that will mean this film will draw $10.35M this week and $13.74M over the weekend, for a cumulative total of $252.6 through next Sunday.

This is barely $3M short of the total box office pulled in by Monsters, Inc. a year and a half ago, and more than all but two other animated films have pulled in during their entire box office releases:

1. $312.9M The Lion King
2. $267.7M Shrek
3. $255.9M Monsters, Inc.
4. $252.6M Finding Nemo (my estimate for a total after just 5 weekends)
5. $245.8M Toy Story 2

My initial estimates were that this film would pull in at least $280M during its box office run, with a clean shot at $300M. And right now these seem right on target, if not even a bit conservative, as Finding Nemo has shown extraordinary legs thus far, consistently exceeding the 35% weekly decline usual for films. Just as was the case for Shrek two years ago.

It also looks like Finding Nemo is going to overhaul The Matrix Reloaded ($264.4M after 6 weekends) as this summer's (and possibly this year's) biggest hit.

Perhaps most intriguing is that thus far Pixar has made no noise about the possibility of including outtakes with this film, as it has for its last three films. I wonder if Disney might be saving that for the July 2nd debut of rival Dreamworks' release of Sinbad? This wouldn't surprise me at all, given the bad blood that has developed between these two studios, starting with Dreamworks' appropriation of Pixar's general theme in A Bug's Life, which Dreamworks appropriated (in Antz) and then rushed to release two months earlier than A Bug's Life in 1998.

Disney certainly seems to be playing rough this year ...

Buona fortuna

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