‘Beauty and the Beast’ sails past 1991 original at box office, topping $425 million worldwide

Just five days into its worldwide release, “Beauty and the Beast” has raked in $206 million at 4,210 locations in the U.S. and another $222 million in 44 other markets. That combined total of $428 million puts this live-action remake ahead of the 1991 animated classic, which made $425 million in all. Back then, the box office was almost evenly split between domestic ($202 million) and foreign ($222 million).

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Today, global takings can be double that of domestic and this edition of “Beauty and the Beast” should easily top the the $1 billion mark. In today’s dollars, the 1991 total of $425 million would be about $725 million, a mark that the current version should hit in several weeks time.

“Beauty and the Beast” is only the fifth title to top $200 million domestically in just five days. One of the others, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2” (2011), also featured Watson. The other three were last year’s “Captain America: Civil War,” “The Dark Knight” (2008) and “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” (2009).

Oscar-winner Bill Condon (“Gods and Monsters”) helms this retelling of the 1991 original that was the first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture with Emma Watson and Dan Stevens in the title roles. While the box office is boffo, the reviews were less sensational. The critics were all over the map as to the merits of this remake. The movie scores 74 at Rotten Tomatoes and 64 at MetaCritic.

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