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Box Office

45% of Upcoming Films are Sequels; PG Ratings Reign

This last year marked the highest earning year in movie history at the domestic box office, with $11.4 billion, up 2.1% over 2015, according to ComScore. The biggest grossing film? Disney’s Finding Dory at $486 million domestically. Internationally, box office sales reached $27.4 billion. The top grossing title worldwide was Captain America: Civil War with $1.15 billion in sales.

Now, as the major studios shift their schedules, TLL has updated our list of upcoming films with licensing potential accordingly. Of the 157 films on the list, 45% (or 70) are sequels, with 24% sourced from books (37), and 21% from comic books (33). Some films fall into more than one category).

PG Now the Go-to Rating

As we enter into a new year, the big trend for films is family friendly as the theater-going population skews younger. In 2016, PG titles held eight of the top 20 slots worldwide for box office sales. Chief among the trend drivers is Disney, which earned $4.6 billion internationally and $3.0 billion domestically in 2016, according to ComScore. Its PG-rated live action and animated releases formed a large part of the studio’s earnings, and now movie theaters are eager to bank on the wave of PG successes with extended screen time.

In the coming months, our list features new PG-rated releases like Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Sony’s Smurfs: The Lost Village, and Universal’s Despicable Me 3—all of which are aimed to broadly appeal to fans of all ages and boast considerable licensing programs.


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