2015 has been very good to Universal Pictures. The studio has just officially broken the record for having the highest-grossing box office year in Hollywood history – and it’s only August.
According to Deadline, Universal has grossed a total of $5.53 billion so far this year, making it the biggest year for a studio ever. In just seven months, the studio edged past the previous record holder, 20th Century Fox, which earned $5.52 billion last year. Unsurprisingly, most of the Universal’s impressive earnings come from two little movies you may have heard about this year: Jurassic World and Furious 7.
After their respective debuts earlier this year, both of the hugely anticipated blockbusters quickly went on to become two of the top five grossing films of all time. Jurassic World is currently No. 3 on that list, having earned $1.562 billion to date worldwide (even beating out The Avengers:Age of Ultron). Meanwhile, Furious 7 is not too far behind as the fifth highest-grossing movie in history, with a total of $1.515 billion at the international box office ($390.8 million of which came from China, making it the country’s biggest movie ever).
With those kinds of numbers coming from only two movies, it’s no wonder that Universal is coming on out top. Add in the bonus fact that both Jurassic World and Furious 7 were generally well-received with critics and it’s easy to think the studio execs are probably taking victory laps right now.
While Jurassic Park and Furious 7 deserve most of the credit for Universal’s great year, three of the studio’s other recently released projects also warrant a shout-out for boost its earnings. Fifty Shades of Grey grossed $570 million upon its debut earlier this year. Meanwhile, Pitch Perfect 2 took everyone by surprise with a gross of $283 million worldwide. Minions has also performed well for Universal so far, earning $856.9 million since its debut only four weeks ago.
Plus, as the studio has already apparently pointed out, the year isn’t over yet. While summer blockbuster season is quickly coming to an end, Universal has several notable movies set for release before the end of the year. The biographical drama Straight Outta Compton hits theaters in mid-August, while Guillermo Del Toro’s highly anticipated Crimson Peak is scheduled for release in October. The much-discussed Steve Jobs biopic is also set to premiere in October.
“We are in business with some of the most talented people in the industry, and the success of our slate this year is a testament to the creativity and vision of our film-makers,” Donna Langley, chairman of Universal Pictures, told the Hollywood Reporter. “With five months remaining in 2015, and 10 films still to come, we look forward to celebrating even more record-breaking milestones.”
While Universal may be miles ahead in the box office race, it’s not the only studio having a good year. The second highest-grossing studio in 2015 is Disney, which reached the $3 billion global mark a month ago and is expecting another major hit in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, due out in December.
Other studios haven’t been as lucky. As revealed last month, Sony is in last place at the box office, having only earned a weak $564 million this year. The studio’s highest-grossing movie so far is Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2, which topped out at only $104 million.
Having already delivered several huge hits with its summer slate, Universal can pretty much rest easy the remainder of the year. With more sequels planned for both the Jurassic World and the Fast and Furious franchises, the studio might be on path to repeat their box office success in the near future.