With less than a week left in 2019, movie theaters aren’t doing as well as previous seasons – even with hit blockbusters out for the holiday rush.
U.S. box office revenues are expected to fall about 4 percent, which could be the sharpest decline in five years, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The report cited Comscore data, which projected North American box office revenue will reach $11.45 billion by the end of the year. If true, this amount would be 3.6 percent less than last year’s $11.88 billion.
Walt Disney snagged first place out of all the movie studios in 2019, raking in $3.79 billion in U.S. box office revenue and $10.4 billion worldwide, based on data from Comscore. Disney’s 10-figure revenue stream was achieved in part by its Marvel Comics franchise and animation studios.
The hit superhero films of the year included “Avengers: Endgame,” which earned $858 million in domestic box office revenue and $2.8 billion worldwide; and “Captain Marvel,” which earned $427 million domestically and $1.13 billion worldwide.
The live-action adaption of “The Lion King” earned $544 million domestically and $1.7 billion worldwide while Disney’s animated “Frozen II” has earned $439 million domestically and $1.16 billion worldwide within a month of its release.
Warner Bros. placed second with $1.4 billion in the U.S. box office revenue and $3.5 billion worldwide. The studio’s competing DC Comics franchise made a significant amount with “Joker” and “Shazam!,” which earned over a combined $473 million domestically and more than $1.4 billion worldwide.
“It: Chapter Two,” “Godzilla: King of the Monsters” and “Pokémon: Detective Pikachu” were the other multimillion-dollar films that earned nine figures each, according to Comscore data.
Universal Pictures placed third with its $1.4 billion U.S. box office revenue and its lesser $3.3 billion worldwide earning. The studio’s commitment to its live-action and animated sequels raked in significant cash for 2019.
“Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw” and “Glass” earned more than $284 million combined domestically and more than $1 billion worldwide. And “How to Train Your Drago: The Hidden World” and “The Secret Life of Pets 2” earned more than $319 million combined domestically and more than $954 million worldwide.
Comedian-actor turned director Jordan Peele’s second indie-style thriller “Us” yielded $175 million domestically and $256 million worldwide for Universal. "Us" was the only top grossing Universal film of the year that wasn’t a sequel.
Sony Pictures Entertainment came in fourth at $1.2 billion in U.S. box office revenue and $2.9 billion worldwide, followed by Lionsgate/Summit’s $756 million in U.S. box office revenue and $1.4 billion worldwide and Paramount Pictures’ $507 million in U.S box office revenue and $1.2 billion worldwide.
Outside of box office earnings, movie studios have also dropped television advertisement spending by 6 percent, according to the ad-measurement platform iSpot.tv. National and regional advertising is estimated to reach $2.24 billion this year, which is less than last year’s recorded $2.38 billion.
Although less is being spent on TV ads, movie studios are directing ad budgets to fund digital and social media campaigns, according to iSpot. The company said 195.7 billion online film streams have happened this year compared to last year’s 47.9 billion thanks to these revised strategies.