Gru, Lucy, and the Minions are back, and up against a new villain — the shoulder-pad sporting, moonwalking Balthazar Bratt.
The “Despicable Me 3” trailer features Bratt (voiced by “South Park” creator Trey Parker) moonwalking on the ocean and up the side of a ship on a pair of skis, while clad in a purple jumpsuit and mullet, as Michael Jackson’s “Bad” pays in the background. Meanwhile back at the Anti-Villain League headquarters, they suspect they are witnessing a monster on the loose, until one member recognizes the villain for who he really is: “That’s no monster — that’s a man wearing shoulder pads!”
Bratt is a former ’80s child star whose show got canceled after he hit puberty. Now he plans on executing a full-fledged world domination.
Gru (Steve Carell) and his wife Lucy (Kristen Wiig) embark on a mission to defeat their newest nemesis, and it appears that Bratt’s battle of choice against Gru is a dance-off.
The film is the fourth in the multi-billion-dollar franchise from Illumination Entertainment. Illumination released the “Despicable Me” spinoff, “Minions,” in 2015. It grossed $1.2 billion worldwide. “Despicable Me” and “Despicable Me 2” debuted in 2010 and 2013, respectively.
“Despicable Me 3” is directed by Kyle Balda and Pierre Coffin, and will hit theaters on June 30.
“Despicable Me 3,” the third instalment of the “Despicable Me” series, will bring Gru (Steve Carell) and his daughters back to the big screen along with his minions. The movie is expected to get released a year from now, on June 30, 2017, but we have some amazing updates on what fans can expect from the animation.
It is understood that the main theme of the movie will be the sibling rivalry between Gru and his long-lost identical twin Drew, also voiced by Carell. Drew is distinguished from our hero with his full blond hair and his all-white dressing style.
Despite their differences, Gru and Drew will find a way to get along and join together in the fight against the actual villain, Balthazar Bratt, voiced by Trey Parker of “South Park” fame.
Balthazar is a child star from the ’80s, who decided to take over the world once his career was finished. According to Cinema Blend, Balthazar is still bitter that his show was cancelled when he hit puberty and he hates being mocked. He is driven by the need of taking over the world, because he knows no one will ever make fun of him if he is the boss.
Disney’s ‘Zootopia’ has crossed the $1 billion mark. One animated flick may gross even more this year.
Their own mammal metropolis isn’t the only place Nick Wildeand Judy Hopps have won over; the bunny-and-fox duo have also dominated the world, with Disney’s Zootopia reaching the $1 billion mark at the worldwide box office earlier this week.
It’s the top-earning animated feature of 2016 thus far, well on its way to making twice as much as Kung Fu Panda 3, which is at #2 among animated films this year.
Will Zootopia be king of the 2016 jungle? Or can another animated flick top it?
Box office experts agree: Finding Dory is likely to surpass Zootopia’s $1 billion+ to become the top-earning animated movie of 2016.
A small, unscientific poll of mine also shows that for parents, Finding Dory is the most-anticipated animated film yet to be released this year. It is the most-often mentioned movie from the handful of parent bloggers I emailed asking what animated film they and their kids are most looking forward to. “My family and I are eager to see Finding Dory this month because Finding Nemo is one of our favorites, including just about every Disney Pixar movie too,” Amy Bellgardt, creator of MomSpark.net and mother of two boys told me via email.
Outside of superhero fare, 2016 has thus far been a rough year for franchises, with audiences turning rather anti-sequel, or perhaps having no tolerance for sequels that just aren’t much good. Zoolander 2, Alice Through the Looking Glass, The Huntsman: Winter’s War, and Divergent Series: Allegiant have all flopped. Kung Fu Panda 3 wasn’t a total failure, but it has somewhat underperformed, earning less than each of the two other films in the franchise.
But as David Mumpower of Box Office Prophets told us via email, “2016’s anti-sequel consumer behavior shouldn’t impact Finding Dory.”
For seven years, Finding Nemo reigned as Pixar’s highest grossing film, until Toy Story 3 came along. Last year’s Inside Out is the only other film from the studio to surpass Nemo’s box office tally. It still stands as the seventh highest-grossing animated movie of all time at the worldwide box office.
Finding Nemo remains one of Pixar’s most beloved films, frequently topping or nearly topping both fan and critic rankings of the studio’s movies, so Finding Dory will bring the solid established audience not only of Pixar devotees but also fans of Nemo especially.
With Finding Dory coming out 13 years after Nemo, it’s not quite at the point where there’s a sizable number of people who saw it as kids who now have kids of their own to take to the movies — as was the case with The Lion King’s massively successful 2011 re-release — but “it’s pretty close,” Bruce Nash, founder and publisher of The Numbers, pointed out.
Finding Dory topping Zootopia’s gross would make the Pixar sequel the fifth animated movie to cross the $1 billion mark after Toy Story 3, Frozen, Minions, and Zootopia.
The creators of those animation box office champions all have new films coming out this year: Disney’s got Zootopia and Moana. Disney•Pixar has Finding Dory opening a week from now. And Illumination Entertainment, the makers of Minions and the Despicable Me movies, will release The Secret Life of Pets next month.
Secret Life is a kind of Toy Story for dogs and cats and bunnies, showing us what goofy antics our pets are up to when we’re not looking. Zootopia proved that another non-sequel, original concept could join Frozen in the $1 billion club, albeit with the proven brand recognition of Disney.
“Secret Life of Pets can also be a success mid-summer, although $1 billion is too much to expect from it,” Gitesh Pandya of Box Office Guru said via email.
Just how much will Secret Life’s family relations to Minions boost its box office success? It’ll help, though the box office experts I consulted have divergent thoughts about just how much it’ll help.
Secret Life’s invocation of the film’s connection to Illumination’s uber-popular little yellow guys with the words “from the humans behind Despicable Me” is, according to Mumpower, “one of the strongest marketing slogans imaginable right now. Putting that note in the trailer spikes the box office dramatically.”
Meanwhile, Pandya said, “Tapping into the Minions fan base is a smart starting point,” and Nash said efforts to make mainstream audiences aware of the Minions connection “won’t make a huge deal of difference.”
Nash also noted that DreamWorks Animation wasn’t able to translate the popularity of its Shrek films into success for the movies that followed the first couple of Shrek installments. How to Train Your Dragon and the Madagascar franchise is where DreamWorks later found box office success, though the four Shrek movies still top the animation studio’s list of highest grossing films.
Though Mumpower has confidence in the power of Secret Life’s link to Minions, he added, “I suspect that Secret Life of Pets would have succeeded if it had come first [among Illumination’s films]. The attachment humans have for their pets fosters continued interest in such concepts, and this movie in particular has a terrific ad campaign. The prim [poodle] rocking out to heavy metal is a perfect animated comedy gag.”
Universal Studios, which is distributing the film, is tapping into that dog-lover and cat-lover audience with a huge partnership with PetSmart.
Looking back at Zootopia, what accounted for its success? It was a film praised by both critics and audiences, and it had a long stretch of time without any competition from other family movies.* Moana has the strong potential to find success for similar reasons, along with the Disney brand recognition. It hits theaters on Thanksgiving weekend, following Trolls’ early November opening and ahead of the Christmas week premiere of Sing, Illumination Entertainment’s movie about animals in an American Idol-esque competition. So Moana doesn’t have quite as much space to itself as Zootopia did, but it’s safe to bet it’ll be the reigning animated movie of the holiday season. Moana, ostensibly introducing the House of Mouse’s first Polynesian princess, features music by Lin-Manuel Miranda. Nash does not expect Miranda’s involvement to be a box office boost in and of itself, despite the massive popularity of Miranda’s Hamilton. Disney musicals are already recognized for their quality tunes, so the film already has its draw for the music (which we may be hearing for the first time in the trailer set to hit the web this Sunday).
When a film makes over $70 million in an opening weekend, it is hard to argue that the marketing team behind a movie did a subpar job. In all fairness to Walt Disney Animation, the trailers and tactics used for this movie worked on a level, by creating a fun and seemingly harmless atmosphere around the film. This likely increased the level of interest in kids, or families with children, but the fact of the matter was, there had not been a movie targeted to children since “Kung Fu Panda 3” in January.
However, the critical success of the film snuck up on many Disney fans, myself included. Among friends and other people I had talked to, most thought the movie was going to be “Dreamworks quality” or a return to the early 2000s for Disney. Some thought the ceiling for the movie, based solely on its marketing, was going to be more in line with “Bolt,” a film that is fun, but ultimately does not come up in conversations about great Disney movies.
After this week though, it is hard to argue that case anymore. With a Rotten Tomatoes score of 99%, a Metacritic score of 78%, and a $73.7 million opening weekend box office, the film is an unbelieveable success for Disney Animation. With “Moana” still on the horizon, it is hard to argue against the idea that Disney Animation is in Renaissance 2.0 mode, with “Wreck-It-Ralph,” “Tangled,” “Frozen,” and “Big Hero 6” representing a run in Disney history that stacks up against any decade in Disney history (and we’re only 6 years in).
Still, the subject matter of “Zootopia” and the genre choices were the most shocking about the film. With many thinking that the movie would be a simple “talking animals movie,” it instead mixed elements of mystery, crime comedy, and solid commentary on the current state of police activity. The film found a way to walk the tightrope between portraying police officers in a negative light, while maintaining that some bad apples do not create a broken system. Its mystery elements harkened back to “The Great Mouse Detective” and “The Rescuers,” but held onto comedy aspects one would expect to find in a film like “Ocean’s 11” or “The Big Lebowski.”
This is no doubt a very different film than we expected, and we have to place some of the blame on Disney. It’s possible they didn’t realize that their film would resonate so strongly with young adults or with the politically charged climate in America right now. Yet, the film that was sold to us lowered expectations to the point that many thought the film would be Disney Animation’s first misstep in its run. What we got were cute scenes of sloths, that ultimately had little to do with the film as a whole.
The problem that the marketing presents though, is that it tells audiences that unless Disney embraces the schtick of “The Minions” or low stakes animation stories, that audiences won’t show up. I think audiences are more grown up than that. If we knew it was a mystery/noir film with comedy, audiences still would have shown up. We would have loved to see a Disney that would lampoon itself, make pop culture jokes, and engage with the zeitgeist. These are the elements that will let this film endure, and some members of the audience were already saying this is their favorite Disney movie in years.
These aspects of the film will be what we remember, and the marketing campaign will fade away with time. Still, it would be nice for Disney to treat its audience with some respect, as opposed to going for the lowest common denominator to bring in audiences. Even though Disney has always been for kids, they don’t have to treat their entire audience like one.
“Zootopia” is currently in theaters. It stars Ginnifer Goodwin, Jason Bateman, Idris Elba, Jenny Slate, Nate Torrence, J.K. Simmons, Octavia Spencer, Tommy Chong, Shakira, and Alan Tudyk.
“Minions,” the animated summer film starring three yellow creatures that don’t speak a discernible language, is the most profitable film in Universal Pictures’ history.
Steve Burke, chief executive officer of Comcast Corp.’s NBCUniversal division, told employees in a memo Wednesday that the picture was among three that each grossed more than $1 billion worldwide in 2015. That was also a first, he said.
The memo underscores the success of Universal’s relationship with Chris Meledandri, whose Illumination Entertainment produced “Minions,” the third film in his “Despicable Me” series. He uses animators in France and is known for delivering films at a lower cost than competitors.
“Minions,” which hit theaters July 10, took in $1.16 billion in worldwide ticket sales on a production budget of $74 million, according to researcher Box Office Mojo. Universal led the box office for the first time since at least 2000, buoyed by three megahits: “Jurassic World,” “Furious 7” and “Minions.”
Universal declined to comment on the memo.
Burke has previously said that 2013’s “Despicable Me 2” was the company’s most profitable ever.
So says Merriam-Webster. According to the English-language dictionary’s list of most-searched this year, the word for “a servile dependent, follower, or underling” was one of the most searched online, of the year. Minions made headlines in 2015 as one of the highest grossing movies worldwide, and as the subject of a viral YouTube video.
But what really wracked our brains was not one word at all, but a kind of word, illustrated by Merrian-Webster’s unusual choice for its annual “Word of the Year”: ism.
“Socialism,” “capitalism,” “fascism,” “terrorism,” and “communism” were all among the most-popular searches this year, along with “racism” and “feminism.”
As editor-at-large Peter Sokolowski told Quartz, 2015 was a year of news stories that raised a whole host of abstract, difficult concepts we struggled to define—not just a single word around a single event, like “bailout.” He writes in an email, “This simply seems to be a year of heightened anxiety in many ways.”
In a prepared statement, Sokolowski noted that searches for “socialism,” while always popular, grew significantly this year because of presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’ socialist policies (and spiked following the first Democratic debate, in which Sanders gave an ode to Denmark)—while Donald Trump’s call to track Muslim-Americans and even to have Muslims banned from entering the country were linked to growth in searches for “fascism.” “Hypocrite” was highly ranked.
Deadly attacks in Paris, Beirut, and San Bernardino, and elsewhere spurred us to seek to answers for “terrorism.” And in a momentous year for LGBT civil rights in the United States, “marriage” and “respect” also trended.
Here’s the dictionary’s full list, ranked by highest pageviews on the site. The third column offers insight into each word’s percentage growth since 2014. (The list excludes some perennially popular searches, like “pragmatic,” “empathy,” and “irony.”)
The Despicable Me franchise enters new territory on July 10 when its first spinoff film, Minions, hits theaters. Although Minions is centered on the now-iconic and extremely popular yellow henchmen from the first two Despicable Me films and features some stellar voice talent in franchise-newcomers Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, and Michael Keaton, fans still might be feeling nostalgic for Steve Carell’s Gru and the rest of the Despicable Me gang. Even though a young version of Gru will be making a cameo in Minions, frankly, it’s not enough. We need more Gru in our lives, and it seems the only way to get it is with a proper sequel to 2013′s Despicable Me 2. So, when does Despicable Me 3 come out?
Unfortunately, we’ve still got a bit of a wait ahead of us. Despicable Me 3 isn’t slated to premiere until June 30, 2017. Yes, we’re aware that’s a full two years in the future, which is definitely fodder enough for a supervillain origin story. But before you start making plans to steal the moon, know this: when it does eventually get released, Despicable Me 3 just might become the biggest hit of the entire franchise. Here are a few reasons why.
The Minions Have Raised The Bar
Already the breakout stars of the first two Despicable Me movies, the Minions are only going to grow in popularity following the debut of their own film. Especially when you consider the fact that Minions’ opening weekend box office take is predicted be $85 million in North America, which would put it ahead of both Despicable Me‘s $56.3 million and Despicable Me 2‘s $83.5 million. No small feat, especially considering that the latter film went on to gross almost one billion dollars at the worldwide box office.
This Could Be Steve Carell’s Last Outing
While nothing is confirmed, IMDb claims that Despicable Me 3 might be the last go-round for Carell as Gru, the franchise’s star. Carell’s performance (along with the Minions) has largely driven the series to this point, so it makes sense that a lot of people would turn out to bear witness to his swan song.
These little yellow critters might be adorable, but the minions have also taught us some VERY valuable life lessons
1. Always look on the bright side of life
If there’s one thing the minions have taught us, it’s that approaching life with a big fat smile on your face is a surefire way to have a good time.
Find the positives, guys.
2. Always be yourself
The minions never try to be someone – or something – that they’re not. Instead, they always stay true to who they are.
Be who you are, minion-lovers. Because who you are is, actually, pretty damn amazing.
3. Enjoy the little things
Whether it’s something as simple as a hug, or a smile, or a kind word, it’s so important to take a little time and look around you every once in a while. After all, life moves pretty fast – you don’t want to miss any of it!
4. Look after your friends
The minions are proof that, when we look out for each other and stand united, we’re more likely to live a happy life.
So be a good friend; when your BFFs need you, make sure you’re there for them – and they’ll return the favour when you need picking up, too.
5. Always try your best
This one says it all really, doesn’t it? If you try your best, you’re more likely to be the best version of you there is – trust us.
6. Work to live, don’t live to work
Work is important, sure – but there are more important things in life. Find the fun in what you do, and always give it your best shot, but don’t live to work. You should be working to live, okay?
7. Ditch toxic frenemies
There comes a time in life when you have to let go of all the pointless drama and the people who create it; instead, surround yourself with the people who make you laugh so hard you forget about the bad and focus solely on the good.
After all, life’s too short to be anything but happy.
8. Hug first, ask questions later
When your loved ones are feeling down, don’t just try to ignore it and hope they’ll feel better. Instead, give them a hug and let them know that they can talk to you when they’re feeling down. It’s the minion way.
9. It is okay to feel sad.
Don’t bottle everything up; there’s absolutely no shame in shedding a tear when you need to. You need to accept when you are sad, you need to face those feelings head-on, and you need to let those around you know that you need your support system.
Feeling sad is healthy, normal, and, despite this being all about out favourite minions, very, very human.
10. Don’t be afraid to speak up
You are valuable – which means that your opinions are valuable, too. So when you’re asked for your opinion, don’t be afraid to give it.
And, even if you’re not asked, speak up if you feel strongly about something; you’ll only regret it later.
11. Know your worth
It doesn’t matter how rich or ‘perfect’ you are; what matters is how much you care, how much you love, and how much you try. These are the qualities that make you worthwhile to know.
12. If you’re not happy, make a change
If life isn’t going the way you planned, take action and change direction. Minions are all about living life as it’s meant to be: hilarious and fun.
Sing and dance through life – and don’t be afraid what others will say. So what if you need to pick up and start over? The life you live is yours, not theirs.
13. Love your body
Girlfriends, big or small, you need to worship that body. It’s the only one you’ve got.
14. Know the power of the banana
After all these minion movies, we all know the power of bananas is well worth investing in. Get your five a day, every day; it’ll give you the energy you need for a minion-worthy song and dance!
15. Stay positive
Just because something isn’t happening for you right now doesn’t mean it will never happen. Stay positive, take action, and never give up. After all, there’s no such thing as an ending – only a new beginning.
As of yesterday, Minions has broken yet another box-office record (or two), and Illumination Entertainment has the Middle Kingdom to thank for that.
As reported by Deadline and Entertainment Weekly, Minions has done what most have either expected or feared (even both) and surpassed Toy Story 3 as the second highest-grossing animated film of all time.
The film bowed in China yesterday to an estimated $20.1 million (125 million in yuan), marking the biggest opening day for an animated film in that country (a title previously held by DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 2). The estimated gains are also higher than that of Despicable Me 2, another Illumination film in the overall Despicable Me franchise (and one that came that close to being in the billion-dollar club itself).
It also helped that, even while this film and the rest of the US blockbuster offerings had to wait out China’s blackout period (where blockbuster films made and produced only in China are given a special spotlight), Illumination was still putting its marketing skills to work. The above picture is from one of those country-specific marketing stunts, where Kevin, Stuart, and Bob visited the Great Wall (they also pulled this stunt for Despicable Me 2).
Minions will only be in Chinese theaters for an allotted 30-day time slot, where it will face off against Sony’s Pixels, Disney/Pixar’s Inside Out, and Marvel/Disney’s Ant Man.
So now that the shock factor behind this news is out of the way (if it isn’t already), let’s talk about what might happen next. Specifically, could Minions possibly go above and beyond our rocked expectations and unseat Frozen as THE highest-grossing animated film of all time? I’m not going to say yes, but I will say that there is a possibility. The fact that it’s September and Minions is still breaking records at an unprecedented pace is reason enough to suspect that this film might be able to punch another hole in box-office history and end on the biggest upset of all before it’s out of theaters entirely.
Minions is currently in theaters. See Morgan’s review of the film here. Listen to the Animation Addicts’ review and discussion of the film here. Stay tuned for the next installment of our Rotoscopers Roundtable, where our writers and editors (me included) react to the film’s soaring box-office run.
Another summer film season, another chance for blockbusters to soar and flops to emerge. Here are the winners and losers of summer 2015.
Minions. These little guys are now a bona fide phenomenon. Their adorability factor is off the charts, and because of this, the third film in the “Despicable Me” universe opened to bigger box office than the previous two.
Rebecca Ferguson. She looks great in formal dress or bikini. She kicks butt with the best of them. This unknown Swedish actress really made her mark in “Mission: Impossible, Rogue Nation.” A star is born.
Dinosaurs. It really didn’t matter that “Jurassic World” was basically the same old same old. (Rampaging dinosaurs! Terrified civilians!) It scored the biggest opening weekend — $208 million — in film history, and crossed the $1 billion mark globally faster than any film ever. You can’t argue with those numbers.
Pixar. “Inside Out” was just the latest in a long line of Pixar hits, a monster critical and commercial success. With “Incredibles 2″ due out next year, it looks like the smashes will keep on coming.
George Miller. The 70-year-old Aussie director made one of the best reviewed films of the summer. “Mad Max: Fury Road,” which earned a 98 percent positive rating on rottentomatoes.com, grossed more than $150 million in the United States and nearly $400 million globally. Now there’s talk of a sequel. And the seemingly ageless Miller will be at the helm. Not bad for a guy who hadn’t directed a live-action feature in nearly 20 years.
Charlize Theron. Add her Furiosa in “Mad Max: Fury Road” to the list of iconic kick-butt female heroines that includes Ripley and Lara Croft. And therein might lie an Oscar nomination.
Joel Edgerton. He wrote, directed and co-starred in “The Gift,” which earned rave reviews and has earned six times its (admittedly small) production budget, making it one of the most profitable films of the season. This Aussie hybrid has a real future behind the camera.
Seventysomethings. Ian McKellen in “Mr. Holmes,” Blythe Danner and Sam Elliot in “I’ll See You In My Dreams,” Lily Tomlin in “Grandma” — all showing the young’uns that charisma and stardom have no age limit.
Rappers. Straight Outta Compton” played to huge business. No real surprise here, since what was once considered a marginal art form is now most certainly part of the mainstream.
“The Terminator” franchise. The filmgoing audience’s basic response to “Terminator: Genisys” was “Please. Don’t come back.”
Tomorrowland. Even George Clooney and director Brad Bird (“The Incredibles,” “Ratatouille”) couldn’t save this futuristic film from laying a huge egg. A confusing screenplay and excessive running time (130 minutes) didn’t help.
Adam Sandler. “Pixels” opened to O.K. business but struggled to cover its production costs. Last year’s “Blended” barely broke even, “The Cobbler” went straight to video and “Men, Women and Children” grossed less than $1 million. Hard times have hit this previously unstoppable box-office monster.
Vacation. Maybe it’s time for the franchise to take a permanent holiday.
David Foster Wallace. Who’s that, you say? He’s the suicidal author of the 1,000-page novel “Infinite Jest” profiled in “The End of the Tour.” Despite a 92 percent Rotten Tomatoes rating and rave reviews for star Jason Segel, the film was seen by almost no one. It seems authors of notoriously difficult doorstop novels are not multiplex-friendly.
Reed Richards, Sue Storm, Johnny Storm and Ben Grimm.Guess they weren’t so darn fantastic after all.
Meryl Streep. That awful title -”Ricki and the Flash” — and La Meryl in some sort of early Joan Jett hairdo just didn’t go over with audiences.
Asian Tourism. “No Escape” made the continent look like hell on earth for Americans.