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‘Inside Out 2’ tops $1 billion at the global box office, first film to do so since ‘Barbie’

Disney and Pixar’s “Inside Out 2” is the newest member of the billion-dollar club.

The animated feature has tallied $1.014 billion worldwide as of Sunday, making it the highest-grossing film of 2024 and the first film since Warner Bros.′ “Barbie” to top $1 billion at the global box office.

“On behalf of movie theatre owners across the country and around the world, we want to congratulate Disney’s ‘Inside Out 2’ for grossing $1 billion faster than any animated movie in history,” said Michael O’Leary, president and CEO of the National Association of Theatre Owners. “The film’s stunning global success once again illustrates that audiences the world over will respond to compelling, entertaining movies, and that they want to enjoy them on the big screen.”

The billion-dollar benchmark is a much-needed win for Disney’s Pixar animation hub. A once prolifically successful studio, Pixar has suffered at the box office in the wake of the pandemic. Much of its difficulties have come, in part, because Disney opted to debut a handful of animated features directly on streaming service Disney+ during theatrical closures and even once cinemas had reopened.

As a result, before “Inside Out 2,” no Disney animated feature from Pixar or its Walt Disney Animation studio had generated more than $480 million at the global box office since 2019.

“Inside Out 2” has also showcased how vital the family audience is to the box office. This underserved crowd accounted for more than 70% of those in attendance during the film’s domestic debut, according to data from EntTelligence.

While this audience came out in droves for Universal’s “The Super Mario Bros. Movie,” which generated more than $1.36 billion at the global box office, there was little for them to feast on until the recent releases of Sony’s “The Garfield Movie” and  Paramount’s  “IF.”

“Inside Out 2” also drove the coveted teen demographic to cinemas, with 14% of foot traffic coming from those aged 13 to 17. This younger generation has been largely absent from the market in recent years.

As the future of moviegoing, this group is particularly important to the industry. Getting them back to the big screen has become a top priority for studios and movie theater operators.

Next up for family and teens is Universal and Illumination’s “Despicable Me 4,” due out in theaters during the July Fourth holiday weekend.

Disclosure: Comcast is the parent company of NBCUniversal and CNBC.

This post appeared first on NBC NEWS

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