Moana: Disney Animation Dominates Box-Office

Disney’s Moana dominated the Thanksgiving box office, earning $81.1 million over the five-day holiday period and $55.5 million for the three-day weekend.

Its success builds on the studio’s hot streak. Disney has released five of the year’s ten highest grossing films, is the leader in terms of market share. Its hits include “Captain America: Civil War,”  “Zootopia,” “Doctor Strange,” “Finding Dory,” “The Jungle Book,” and now “Moana,” with “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” waiting in the wings.

Disney distribution chief Dave Hollis said that the success of “Moana” and others like it justified the company’s decision to make fewer films, while taking bigger bets. Part of that strategy involved shelling out billions of dollars to buy Pixar, Marvel, and LucasFilm, the brands behind “Toy Story,” “The Avengers,” and “Star Wars.”

“We are working with the greatest brands and we’re doing big, broad storytelling that resonates domestically, but has the power to transcend borders and languages and cultures around the world,” said Hollis.

This charming historical fable is one of the most acclaimed pictures of the year, benefiting from a 98 percent of approval among film critics, according to Rotten Tomatoes.

Three thousand years ago, the greatest sailors in the world voyaged across the vast Pacific, discovering the islands of Oceania. But then, for a millennium, their voyages stopped–for no apparent explanation.

The tale centers on an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people.

During her journey, Moana (voice of Auli’i Cravalho) meets the mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson), who guides her in her quest to become a master wayfinder.

Joining forces, they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering all kinds of monsters and impossible odds.

Along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors by discovering what matters to her the most–her own identity.

Directed by the renowned filmmaking team of Ron Clements and John Musker (“The Little Mermaid,” “Aladdin,” “The Princess & the Frog”), produced by Osnat Shurer (“Lifted,” “One Man Band”).

Moana features grand, melodic music by Lin-Manuel Miranda (“Hamilton”), Mark Mancina and Opetaia Foa’i.