In recent years, Disney has come to own eight of the top 10 highest-grossing movies of all-time. For decades, Disney was known primarily as an animation studio, thanks to classics such as Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Dumbo, and The Lion King, among many, many others. Of course, they also dabbled in live-action, but it wasn’t until the 2000s that they really started to push beyond their self-imposed boundaries, ultimately leading to multiple studio acquisitions.
Thanks to acquiring Marvel Entertainment in 2009 and Lucasfilm in 2012, Disney was truly able to diversify their audiences and capitalize on world-renowned properties, and their viewership is now going to expand even more due to their acquisition of 21st Century Fox (which includes 20th Century Fox), which officially closed earlier this year. With countless titles under their belt, Disney was able to produce some of the highest-grossing films of all-time, and it seems a great number of them rank in the top 10.
As of July 2019, Disney owns eight of the top 10 highest-grossing movies of all-time at the worldwide box office, and those films are: Avengers: Endgame ($2.791 billion), Avatar ($2.789 billion), Titanic ($2.187 billion), Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($2.068 billion), Avengers: Infinity War ($2.048 billion), The Avengers ($1.518 billion), Avengers: Age of Ultron ($1.405 billion), and Black Panther ($1.346 billion). Universal Pictures owns the other two top-grossing films: Jurassic World ($1.671 billion) and Furious 7 ($1.516 billion), which are slotted in sixth and eighth place, respectively, on the top 10 list.
It’s amazing to see that, not including Avatar and Titanic, which are the only two original properties among the top 10 highest-grossing films, everything else that make up the list are adaptations and sequels – all of which released this decade. Furthermore, all of those movies have released in recent years, with The Avengers being the oldest; it hit theaters in 2012 while the rest have released from 2015 to 2019. (Again, this is besides Avatar and Titanic, which released in 2009 and 1997, respectively.)
It wasn’t too long ago that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 was ranked as the third highest-grossing movie of all-time. And before that, The Dark Knight set the stage by becoming the first superhero movie to cross the billion-dollar mark in 2008, something that seems relatively easy to do nowadays for blockbusters thanks to inflation and ticket price inflation, as well as an increase in the number of theaters and the widespread adoption of premium formats, such as Real 3D and IMAX. After all, it was reported that roughly 45% of Avengers: Endgame‘s record-breaking opening weekend was earned from those types of premium screenings.
Even though Disney inherited two of the top 10 highest-grossing movies from Fox, those films are still theirs. And with more Marvel, Star Wars, and even Avatar movies on the way, who knows, perhaps one day the Mouse House will end up owning every movie on the list – but they would need to push out Universal’s Jurassic World and Furious 7 first, just like they did several Warner Bros. movies, such as Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings.
Next: Disney’s Upcoming Movie Releases – From 2019 to 2023