Forbes’ influential film journalist Scott Mendelson looks ahead to the release of MINIONS: THE RISE OF GRU, opening July 1. Mendelson points out two interesting facts about the Minions sequel produced by Illumination and distributed by Universal.
First, this is the last major film whose original plans for release were derailed by the pandemic. This could spell trouble for exhibition, as the supply of new releases will no longer be supplemented by the once-substantial COVID backlog.
Second, Mendelson notes that the expected strong box office performance of MINIONS 2 is another case of a non-Disney animated title outperforming Disney at the box office. One early example of this was Illumination and Universal’s Christmas 2021 release of SING 2, which earned $411M globally compared with Disney’s Thanksgiving 2021 release of ENCANTO, which came in with only $255M.
Since then, Dreamwork’s THE BAD GUYS and Paramount’s SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 2 have also done relatively well at $221M and $393M, while Disney has remained somewhat quiet with their animated releases. The looming face-off between Pixar’s LIGHTYEAR and Universal’s MINIONS 2 will be another checkpoint on which studio is leading the race as the most popular animation studio in the business.