A decade removed from its hugely successful predecessor, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again debuted last weekend to the respectable tune of $34.4 million. That performance was in line with projections and the sequel is expected to continue bringing in audiences at the box office in the weeks to come. Beyond just success in its own right, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again has given Universal something to else to sing about. Mamma Mia 2's opening weekend has pushed the studio past the $1 billion mark at the domestic box office for the year.
This is the eighth consecutive time that Universal has passed $1 billion at the domestic box office. Universal enters the three-comma club second in 2018, joining first place studio Disney. According to Deadline, the Mouse House is lapping the field on the year, currently sitting at $2.55 billion at the domestic box office. While Disney's powerful blockbusters from the Star Wars, Marvel and Pixar brands have propelled it into the stratosphere, Universal crossed the billion dollar mark with a wide variety of titles. Last weekend's box office speaks to this with four very different Universal titles in the top 10, including the aforementioned musical Mamma Mia 2, Blumhouse's action horror film The First Purge, the blockbuster Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and Dwayne Johnson's original action movie Skyscraper.
The T-Rex in the room for Universal this year has been Fallen Kingdom, which is on its way to $400 million domestically. The sequel in the massive franchise is also in the billion-dollar club in its own right, having crossed $1 billion worldwide earlier this year. Behind Fallen Kingdom is another title that, like Mamma Mia 2, brought in female audiences, and that's Fifty Shades Freed. Although the closing chapter in that franchise suffered diminishing returns from its predecessors, it still netted Universal $100.4 million at the domestic box office. Some other notable titles that helped Universal to the $1 billion mark on the year are the horror flick Insidious: The Last Key, Pacific Rim Uprising and the R-rated comedy Blockers.
Although Disney is way ahead of the pack right now, it is cool to see the way Universal has also crossed $1 billion mark at the domestic box office on the year with still several months to go. A barrage of blockbusters and IP's aren't the only way to succeed. Universal's offerings may not be as flashy, but they are still getting the job done by providing something different and catering to underserved audiences.
On the horizon for Universal are a number of eclectic titles, including The House With a Clock in Its Walls, Halloween and Mortal Engines. For the biggest titles coming from Universal and everyone else the rest of the year, check out our release schedule. For all the latest box office and movie news, stay tuned to CinemaBlend.