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Disney has had a stupendous past 12 months. Just one look at the box office top five proves that, as the studio rested comfortably in four of these spots. But that doesn't really underline Disney's supremacy. Because when we say goodbye to 2016 in just a few days time, the final numbers will reveal that it has been a record breaking year at the box office, with receipts totaling $11.3 billion. Disney will account for over half of this amount.
What's even more staggering about Disney's success is that's before we take into consideration Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which is already well on course to rival Captain America: Civil War at the top of the 2016 box office chart. Disney's most successful films over the last year have been Civil War with $1,153.3 billion, Finding Dory with $1,027.8 billion, Zootopia with $1,023.8 billion, and The Jungle Book with $966 million. Rogue One is already at $687.9 million after just 11 days of release, too.
Speaking to Vanity Fair about the past year at the box office, Dave Hollis, who is Disney's executive vice president of theatrical exhibition, sales and distribution, opened up about why the studio has found such success. Hollis believes that audiences flock to see Disney's movies because they don't want to miss out, as he added:
With our movies, there's some social currency in being part of the phenomenon.
When Alan Horn was appointed as the studio head of Disney back in 2012, it's believed that he made sure to ask of every Disney, Marvel Studios, Pixar and Lucasfilm release whether audiences needed to see the movie now and whether they needed to see it in the theater. Clearly that strategy has worked quite a treat, as the Star Wars and Marvel Cinematic universes have never been in better shapes, while Disney's live-action retellings of their classic animated efforts have chimed with audiences, and their new animated films are even beginning to rival those from Pixar.
Plus it also helps that Rogue One, Captain America: Civil War, Zootopia, Finding Dory and The Jungle Book have each been hugely enjoyable and well-crafted movies. These films have not just made audiences rush to go and see them in theaters, when it's now become much easier to just wait until they're released online, but the fact that they're very good films means they've benefitted from word-of-mouth buzz and chatter, too. And with Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Star Wars: Episode 8 and Beauty And The Beast being released in 2017, it's a success that's all set to continue.