ByElise Jost, writer at
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Elise Jost

The freshly released The Secret Life of Pets relies on a pretty simple concept: What are your pets up to when you're away? It's a question that every pet owner can identify with, no matter their age, and it's an open door to a gazillion of gags. And although a promising recipe doesn't guarantee overwhelming success, Illumination Entertainment's latest animation gem dominated this weekend's domestic box office — so get ready for another Minions-style takeover of the world.

The Secret Life Of Pets Ruled This Weekend's Box Office

The Secret Life of Pets brought in an impressive $103.17 million on its opening weekend stateside, making it the sixth animated film ever to go past the $100 million mark on its opening weekend, and the sixth movie to do so this year. Featuring the voices of Louis C.K., Eric Stonestreet, Kevin Hart, Jenny Slate and Ellie Kemper, the movie follows the adventures of a dog named Max having to put up with a second dog in the home — until they meet a manic bunny and his gang of abandoned pets.

The family movie took the spotlight off of Disney's Finding Dory, but the Finding Nemo sequel is still smashing box offices everywhere: At $422.5 million domestically, it's the highest grossing release in the US this year, and it's well on its way to topping Shrek 2 as the second highest grossing animated movie of all time. Worldwide, it's still waiting to debut in a few markets, so don't expect the Dory fever to die down any time soon.

The Legend Of Tarzan Didn't Tank, And Mike And Dave Need Wedding Dates Defied Expectations

'Mike And Dave Need Wedding Dates' / 20th Century Fox
'Mike And Dave Need Wedding Dates' / 20th Century Fox

The Legend of Tarzan's $37 million opening on Independence Day weekend had been highly disappointing considering its $180 million budget, but the blockbuster led by True Blood's Alexander Skarsgard seems to be benefiting from the absence of direct competition. It came in second this weekend with $20.6 million domestically, just above Finding Dory's $20.3 million. With $135.4 million worldwide, it can still count on a few more openings to meet its budget, but it's certainly no trailblazer.

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates achieved a more promising performance with $16.6 million. It's an even more satisfying figure when you consider that this summer comedy, starring Anna Kendrick, Aubrey Plaza, Adam DeVine and Zac Efron, is R-rated and based on the real-life but trivial story of two brothers who put up an ad looking for wedding dates.

Does The Success Of The Secret Life Of Pets Indicate A Resurgence Of Original Movies?

'Inside Out' / 'Zootopia' / 'The Secret Life of Pets'
'Inside Out' / 'Zootopia' / 'The Secret Life of Pets'

The biggest takeaway from this weekend's box office is that The Secret Life of Pets' performance also means it topped Inside Out's $90.4 million opening, and robbed the Pixar masterpiece of its largest opening record for an original animated movie. Could we be seeing a comeback of original stories in Hollywood? Zootopia, while it opened with $75 million, is now the second biggest original movie of all time behind Avatar. Meanwhile, Pixar has announced they would hit pause on sequels after The Incredibles 2.

On top of that, Illumination Entertainment is clearly on a roll with a second original release scheduled later this year: Sing, an animated musical boosting a stellar voice cast including Scarlett Johansson, Taron Egerton, Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon, is coming out on December 21. Thank you, animation studios, for bringing us stories that we've never seen before!

Which movie are you going to see this summer?

[Source: Box Office Mojo]


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