Rare Hollywood Gambles On Originality Pay Off With 'Frozen,' 'Lego Movie'

Feb 16 2014, 3:32pm CST | by

Frozen and The Lego Movie show the power of an original kids film.

Disney’s Frozen is on track to earn $1 billion. The film has now brought in $956 million at the global box office, making it the highest-earning non-sequel animated film of all time.  Meanwhile, The Lego Movie dominated the box office for a second week in a row this weekend. The film earned $48.8 million this weekend, according to Exhibitor Relations, making it the top-grossing movie of the year so far.

It’s no secret that a good kids film can be a huge money maker. The Toy Story franchise has earned $1.9 billion at the global box office. The five Shrek movies (including Puss in Boots) have brought in $3.5 billion.

What’s a big deal about Frozen and Lego is that both films were relative risks. Before Oscar nominations were announced, a billboard on Ventura Boulevard near my house was pushing Disney’s Monsters University, asking voters to nominate the film in several categories. Clearly, the folks at Disney saw the film as their best chance for a nod.

Cut to post-Oscar nominations (Monsters University failed to get a nomination) and that billboard is now pushing Frozen, which is up for Best Animated Film and Best Original Song for Let It Go.

Because Frozen was an original story without known characters, it was a risk. As a film lover (and as a parent), you desperately want studios to take these kinds of risks. While Monsters University was perfectly charming, there are few things better than going into a film with no idea how it is going to play out and then having your socks knocked off. My family saw Monsters University once. We’ve already seen Frozen three times (including one sing along showing).

The same is true of The Lego Movie. As I wrote last week, the real lesson from The Lego Movie isn’t that audiences want more product integration. (At a basic level the film is a 90-minute ad for Legos.) It’s that in the hands of the right creative filmmakers, given freedom from the studio, any idea can lead to a really wonderful movie. Lines from The Lego Movie have already worked their way into my kids’ conversation. That’s saying a lot.

Hopefully, the success of these two films will encourage studios to be bold when coming up with new kids movies. This year we’ll get a sequel to How To Train Your Dragon and a another to Disney’s awful movie Planes.

But we’ll also get Big Hero 6 from Disney (based on a comic book) and Home from DreamWorks Animation. Hopefully, one of these films will be the next Frozen or the next Lego Movie. Hopefully the studios will be well rewarded at the box office for their originality.

Follow me on Twitter at DorothyatForbes.

Source: Forbes Business

 
 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Korea Ship Tragedy: Parents Go From Anger To Acceptance While Nation Wallows In Shame
On the crowded floor of the gymnasium in the incredibly pleasant town of Jindo, on the southwestern Korean coast, hundreds of people are going through all the stages of grief. There has been anger, denial, bargaining...
 
 
How To Choose The Right Medium For Your Message
From music streaming services to magazine mobile apps, the last few years have brought us an array of options when it comes to choosing a message’s medium. New platforms, like Vine, have even reinvented publishing...
 
 
New Medicare Data Reveal Startling $496 Million Wasted On Chiropractors
Ten days ago, the federal government released a huge data set detailing how it spent $77 billion in Medicare funds in 2012 to over 880,000 health care providers. The release of this data is part of a new transparency...
 
 
Vault-Like Services Could Be Next Fantasy Sports Success Stories
Billions of dollars are being exchanged among fantasy sports participants, which has led to the rise of subsectors within the fantasy gaming industry.  The most well-known subsector is the rapidly rising daily fantasy...
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

How To Choose The Right Medium For Your Message
From music streaming services to magazine mobile apps, the last few years have brought us an array of options when it comes to choosing a message’s medium. New platforms, like Vine, have even reinvented publishing...
Read more on Business Balla
 
New Medicare Data Reveal Startling $496 Million Wasted On Chiropractors
Ten days ago, the federal government released a huge data set detailing how it spent $77 billion in Medicare funds in 2012 to over 880,000 health care providers. The release of this data is part of a new transparency...
Read more on Business Balla
 
Vault-Like Services Could Be Next Fantasy Sports Success Stories
Billions of dollars are being exchanged among fantasy sports participants, which has led to the rise of subsectors within the fantasy gaming industry.  The most well-known subsector is the rapidly rising daily fantasy...
Read more on Business Balla
 
The Pain & Pleasure Of Branded Social Media
During a recent Bulldog webinar on the subject of media relations 2.0, a senior communications professional from the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) noted that when the organization wanted to announce news, it simply...
Read more on Business Balla
 
Counting Jack Ma's $5 Billion Shopping Spree In 2014
So, how is your 2014 going? For Jack Ma, the past five months were one crazy shopping spree. The 49-year-old billionaire founder and executive chairman of Alibaba Group has been involved in eight major deals with a...
Read more on Business Balla
 
The Weekly Oil & Gas Follies
The Weekly Oil and Gas Follies – Volume 42, April 21, 2014 In which we drill down into the @GDBlackmon Twitter feed to briefly chronicle the week’s silliness, shenanigans, fake news and real news related to the oil and...
Read more on Business Balla
 
The Challenges Of Remote Management: One Manager's Perspective
Sometimes it seems you can learn more about management from sitting at a bar than from reading a textbook. I was recently sitting at a bar at a resort with my wife, and began to chat with the man sitting next to me. ...
Read more on Business Balla
 
Weekend Box Office: Johnny Depp's 'Transcendence' Flops, 'Heaven Is For Real' Soars
Heaven Is For Real is to The Grudge as God’s Not Dead is to The Ring. As the first major Christian-centric film to drop after the surprisingly successful God’s Not Dead, Heaven Is For Real got to capitalize on being the...
Read more on Business Balla
 
How Michael Jordan Outsmarted Robert Johnson And Herb Kohl
The agreed to sale of the Milwaukee Bucks last week by Herb Kohl to Marc Lasry and Wesley Edens for $550 million shows how Michael Jordan outsmarted a billionaire and a U.S. senator. In June 2003, Jordan was considering...
Read more on Business Balla
 
Whatever Happened To Volvo: New York Auto Show Has Answers
NEW YORK — Volvo Cars of North America is on the rebound, neatly symbolized by the new 2015 Volvo V60 station wagon, on display at the New York International Auto Show. “We brought back the wagon – but not the old kind...
Read more on Auto Balla
 
 
Auto Balla Sexy Balla Sport Balla TV Balla Politics Balla Movie Balla Apple Balla Business Balla Ad Balla Celebrity Balla