While Disney's Star Wars: The Force Awakens ended up being the biggest movie of 2015 at the box office, Universal Pictures ended up as the year's big winner, from a studio standpoint. Universal's movies raked in $2.44 billion domestically and $6.89 billion globally, becoming the first studio in history to have three movies that took in $1 billion worldwide, Jurassic World, Furious 7 and Minions. The studio also became the fastest to break $5 million worldwide and $3 billion internationally, but that record was just broken this weekend by Disney, thanks to their animated sequel, Finding Dory.
Deadline reports that, lead by Finding Dory's $50.1 million global haul this weekend, the studio passed $5 billion worldwide in record time, beating Universal, which crossed the milestone on July 17 last year. Disney also crossed the $3 billion international milestone on July 6, beating Universal's record which was set last year on July 8. This is only the second time that Disney has crossed $5 billion worldwide in a single year, with the first time coming last year, crossing the milestone on December 20, just two days after Star Wars: The Force Awakens opened in theaters.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens' 2016 figures account for $737 million of the studio's $5.02 billion worldwide haul. Disney's biggest hits this year to date are Captain America: Civil War ($406.2 million domestic, $1.1 billion worldwide), Zootopia ($340.9 million domestic, $1.02 billion worldwide), The Jungle Book ($360.1 million domestic, $936 million worldwide) and Finding Dory ($422.5 million domestic, $643 million worldwide). If either The Jungle Book or Finding Dory can cross $1 billion, it will join Universal as the only two studios to release three $1 billion movies in one year.
As of now, those aforementioned Disney movies represent four of the top five movies on the domestic charts, with 20th Century Fox's Deadpool representing the only non-Disney movie in the top five, sitting in third place with $363 million. On the worldwide charts, Captain America: Civil War, Zootopia and The Jungle Book are the top three movies, followed by Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice ($872.7 million) and Deadpool ($781.6 million). With several more highly-anticipated movies coming in the back half of 2016, Disney may set even more records by the time the year is over.
Later this year, Disney will release the live-action remake of Pete's Dragon (August 5), Marvel's Doctor Strange) (November 4, the animated adventure Moana (November 23) and the first Star Wars spinoff, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (December 16). It's possible that Disney could become the first studio ever to cross $7 billion worldwide in a calendar year, but it's too soon to tell at this point. Be sure to stay tuned for more on Disney's incredible year at the box office as more numbers come in.