The film's multiplex popularity was enough to knock Sony's
What matters now to DreamWorks Animation is how the film holds up in subsequent weekends. Despite the huge opening, few expect the computer-animated flick to top the $920.7 million worth of tickets that Shrek 2 sold globally. Yes, inflation makes it possible to top old records by selling fewer tickets, but there are just so many "can't miss" summer blockbusters coming out over the next few weeks, that it will be a challenge for a dated release not to grow stale.
That's just how it goes. Sony and Marvel
Shrek 2 opened a week before Memorial Day back in 2004, suffering a more modest 33% dip in ticket sales the following weekend.
At the very least, we know that DreamWorks Animation has a juggernaut that it can tap for a sequel every three years. That has been the plan at the studio, whose aim is to have two animated releases annually. At least one will be an original property. The other will be eventually be a sequel, once DreamWorks Animation puts a third winner into the rotation (Shrek and Madagascar are the first two that are projected to have a new entry every three years).
Successful sequels are important, because they typically cost more to make. Voice talent celebrities demand higher salaries as successful franchises grow. The kicker is that it doesn't take much to educate the audience to buy into the characters that they already find endearing. The key is to make sure that each new installment is compelling enough to keep the ogre oglers ogling.
That's how it seems, anyway. For one weekend at least, everybody loves Shrek.
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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is a sucker for quality animation. Yes, he owns shares of Disney and DreamWorks Animation. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.