Barbie has sailed past $1 billion in global ticket sales

Barbie is now the biggest to be directed by one woman, breaking a record for female directors that was previously held by Patty Jenkins

Lindsey Bahr
Monday 07 August 2023 04:54 BST
Barbie teaser trailer

In just three weeks in theaters, Greta Gerwig’s Barbie has raked in an astounding $1.03bn at the global box office, according to official Warner Bros estimates.

The film starring Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling added another $53m from 4,178 North American locations this weekend, according to studio estimates on Sunday (6 August).

In modern box office history, just 53 movies have made over $1bn, not accounting for inflation, and Barbieis now the biggest to be directed by one woman, supplanting Wonder Woman’s $821.8m global total.

Three movies that were co-directed by women are still ahead of Barbie, including Frozen ($1.3bn) and Frozen 2 ($1.45bn) both co-directed by Jennifer Lee and Captain Marvel ($1.1bn), co-directed by Anna Boden. But, Barbie has passed Captain Marvel domestically with $459.4m (versus $426.8m), thereby claiming the North American record for live-action movies directed by women.

New competition came this weekend in the form of the animated, PG-rated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem and the Jason Statham shark sequel, Meg 2: The Trench, both of which were neck-in-neck with Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer, also in its third weekend, for the second-place spot.

Meg 2 managed to sneak ahead and land in second place. It overcame its abysmal reviews to score a $30m opening weekend from 3,503 locations.

The Warner Bros release, directed by Ben Wheatley, currently has a 29 per cent critics’ score on Rotten Tomatoes and a B- CinemaScore from audiences. The thriller was released in 3D, which accounted for 22 per cent of its first weekend business.

Third place went to Oppenheimer, which added $28.7 million from 3,612 locations in North America, bringing its domestic total to $228.6m. In just three weeks, the J. Robert Oppenheimer biopic starring Cillian Murphy became the highest-grossing R-rated film of the year (ahead of John Wick Chapter 4) and the sixth-biggest of the year overall, surpassing Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.

Oppenheimer also celebrated a landmark, crossing $500m globally in three weeks. Its worldwide tally is currently $552.9m, which puts it ahead of Dunkirk, which clocked out with $527m in 2017 and has become Nolan’s fifth-biggest movie ever.

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It’s now among the four top-grossing biographies ever (company includes Bohemian Rhapsody, The Passion of the Christ and American Sniper and the biggest World War II movie of all time.

Paramount’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was close behind in fourth place with an estimated $28m from 3,858 theaters in North America. Since opening on Wednesday, the film, which is riding on excellent reviews and audience scores, has earned $43.1m.

Additional reporting by agencies

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