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Toothless looking menacing in How to Train Your Dragon 3

It’s been five years since How to Train Your Dragon 2 came out, and this weekend we finally get to see how this epic and emotional story concludes with How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. Many overseas moviegoers have already had that pleasure because the film began rolling out in foreign markets at the beginning of the year, and it has done quite well for itself so far.

Prior to its domestic opening, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World has made a whopping $175 million overseas, surpassing its $129 million budget, according to Deadline. The threequel has played in 49 territories thus far with more yet to open, including North America. In 40 of those markets The Hidden World debuted at No. 1, setting records for the franchise in 39 of them.

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World was also the biggest Dreamworks Animation opening in multiple territories and the biggest animated opening of all time in Egypt and Vietnam. Clearly the How to Train Your Dragon franchise has global appeal, and unlike so many franchises, it is going out with a bang and not losing steam as it approaches the finish line.

The animated movie still has a long road ahead of it, but its overseas performance has already elevated it above The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part and Alita: Battle Angel at the worldwide box office. It only trails behind M. Night Shyamalan’s Glass as far a Hollywood releases in 2019 are concerned.

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World is far from finished bringing in money at the box office and making fans ugly cry. The Dean DeBlois film continues its rollout with North America and 9 other markets this weekend, followed by 11 more markets in March, including the ever-important China.

Domestically, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World got a head start thanks to preview screenings in early February that brought in $2.5 million. When it opens this weekend, The Hidden World is tracking at bringing in between $40 million and $45 million. The low end of that would be below its predecessors, 2010’s How to Train Your Dragon and 2014’s How to Train Your Dragon 2 with $43.7 million and $49.4 million, respectively.

The opening weekend isn’t the be-all end-all though, and that solid start is just the beginning for a film that could have major legs. The next big family film, Disney’s live-action Dumbo remake, doesn’t arrive until the end of March, so How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World won’t have much direct competition for families until then.

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World should also benefit from great word of mouth as is the trend and expectation for this franchise. The film currently boasts a 94% on Rotten Tomatoes and there is already talk that this trilogy capper could finally land the franchise the Best Animated Feature Oscar at next year’s ceremony.

Bring the tissues and check out How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, in theaters February 22. Take a look at our release schedule to see all the other movies you can look forward to this year.

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