Walt Disney’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’ was a monster at the box office this weekend, pulling a massive $170 million in its domestic debut and $180m overseas. The film now stands as the seventh-biggest Fri-Sun opening weekend of all time, and the second-biggest non-summer opening, falling just behind ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ which made $248m. Despite having being open less than a week, it is already the year’s second biggest domestic grosser.
Directed by Bill Condon, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ is the latest is a string of Disney live-action remakes, drawing from the 1991 hit that became the first animated film to be nominated for best-picture at the Academy Awards. Boasting an all-star cast including Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Ewan McGregor, Ian McKellan, Luke Evans, and Kevin Klein, the film was marketed less as a children’s tale and more of a serious romantic drama, allowing it to appeal to a wider audience.
Fans will also have the opportunity to explore further into the world of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ upon its home release, with Cordon stating that nine minutes of deleted scenes will be featured on the DVD/Blu-ray. Furthermore, the director confirmed that the original cut of the film was around 20 minutes longer, but was shortened to its already lengthy 2 hour and 10 minute running time.
With regions such as Australia still yet to release the film, there is no doubt that ‘Beauty and the Beast’ will become one of the biggest block busters of the year and set a high bar for future Disney adaptations.
‘Beauty and the Beast’ opens 23rd March in Australia.