Pixar films are renowned for appealing to both younger and mature audiences. However, in the US, MONSTERS UNIVERSITY has seen a dramatic drop in single adults, couples and teenagers attending screenings this weekend. That still hasn’t damaged its box office takings since the film has grossed an impressive $82.4 million opening, the second-highest debut for a Pixar film behind TOY STORY 3.
TOY STORY 3 proved to be a huge hit with families as well as the usual cinema ticket buying demographic that are couples, teenagers, and single adults. The film earned a record-setting $110 million this same weekend in 2010. Last year’s BRAVE also attracted an older audience, with a large share of its opening $66 million gross coming from non-family audiences.
So why is MONSTERS UNIVERSITY less appealing to non-families? Well the mixed critical reviews may have had a discouraging effect. But some of the blame should be apportioned to the Disney marketing department for marketing MONSTERS UNIVERSITY as a more juvenile comedic offering. This is perfectly adequate for a family audience. An older audience without children demand more. What adult wouldn’t have identified with the passing of childhood so poignantly portrayed in TOY STORY 3? Or recognised the generational battle of wills between parent and child in BRAVE? Or empathised with the profound sense of loss of a loved one so heartbreakingly and sincerely handled in UP? I defy anyone not to be affected by perhaps the saddest scene ever committed to film. And within the first half hour or so!
Perhaps Pixar feel (with the exception of TOY STORY) that its sequels don’t require the nuances that make the originals so appealing to all audiences. CARS 2 for instance. I hope that doesn’t prove the case for THE INCREDIBLES 2!
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