LOS ANGELES (AP) – The “Circle of Cash” continues for “The Lion King.” The live-action remake of the animated Disney classic took in a lion’s share of the box office total over the weekend. The movie grossed $185 million in its first weekend in theaters. Most industry insiders had pegged the Lion King’s opening at $150 million – but those guesses proved overly modest. Despite getting mixed reviews, enough moviegoers were drawn to hear the A-list cast reprise the original, including Beyonce and Donald Glover to put it solidly at the top of the weekend list. And Lion King ended up posting records for most ticket sales for a July opening and for the biggest take for a PG-13 movie.
There’s more box office news for Disney. “Avengers: Endgame” has become the highest-grossing movie of all time. The movie didn’t make the top ten this weekend – but that didn’t matter in the race for number-one overall. It added another $1.5 million globally – and in doing so, it surpasses “Avatar” at just over $2.79 billion. One Hollywood insider calls “Endgame’s” eclipse of the Avatar record “a huge achievement.”