After a string of megabucks acquisitions, one in three tickets sold in the US are for Disney films. Can rival studios fight back?
The US box office may be faltering so far this year – nearly 10% down on its record-setting results in 2018 – but one success story stands out: films released by the Walt Disney Studio, through its cinema release arm Buena Vista, have earned more than $2bn (£1.6bn) in 2019, a 35% market share. In effect, more than a third of all cinema tickets bought in North America are for a Disney movie.
This level of dominance is unprecedented. It is nearly nine points ahead of last year, when Disney recorded the previous highest market share, having achieved a similar figure of 26% in 2016. The last time a non-Disney studio “won” the US box office year was in 2015, when Universal managed 22%.