Universal's "Despicable Me 2" blew away all analyst expectations this holiday weekend.
The return of Steve Carell as the villain with a heart of gold, Gru, and his little yellow henchmen earned a massive $142.1 million domestic haul over the five-day weekend.
Expectations for the sequel to the 2010 film were set around $100 million.
Over the course of the three-day weekend, the yellow minions brought in an estimated $82.5 million. (That number should go up a little since the night's not over.)
That's more than the $82.4 million of Disney and Pixar's "Monsters University."
The original film debuted to $56.4 million.
"Despicable Me 2" is now the fourth-highest grossing opening weekend for any animated film.
|Movie||Year||Opening Weekend Gross|
|"Shrek The Third"||2007||$121.6 million|
|"Toy Story 3"||2010||$110.3 million|
|"Shrek 2"||2004||$108 million|
|"Despicable Me 2"||2013||$82.5 million|
|"Monsters University"||2013||$82.4 million|
Compared to previous Independence Day weekends, the little yellow minions place third only behind "Spider-Man 2" ($88.2 million) and "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" ($97.9 million).
For a five-day weekend total, the film beat out 2010's "Toy Story 3" which accumulated $141 million in the same time frame.
The film's marketing campaign was excellent.
Universal used the appeal of its loveable yellow minions to get people excited for the film. The little yellow guys were ubiquitous in a blimp — called the Despicablimp— that toured the country, teasersfor the film, commercials including one for Progressive, and as toys in McDonalds' Happy Meals.
Another plus for the movie was that it was cheaper than most other animated films to make.
A spin-off sequel is already in the works for Gru's minions next year.