Coming off reaching the billion-dollar mark in international box office sales last weekend, Paramount Pictures Corporation has now also crossed the billion-dollar milestone on its domestic gross sales, making it the first studio to accomplish this feat this calendar year and besting last year’s billion-dollar record by nearly three weeks.
This marks back-to-back years of firsts for Paramount Pictures and five consecutive weeks of holding the Number One spot in domestic market share. The studio also set a new first as of this weekend — having the Top Three grossing films of 2008 at mid-year.
The half-year got off to a strong start with J.J. Abrams’ thriller Cloverfield earning $80M. Paramount was further buoyed by the blockbuster successes of Marvel Entertainment’s Iron Man ($305M), Lucasfilms’ and Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull ($291M) and DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda ($156M).
“It has been a wonderful year so far,” said Paramount Chairman Brad Grey. “As we look towards the rest of 2008, and into 2009 — when we will have ‘Transformers II,’ J.J. Abrams’ ‘Star Trek,’ ‘G.I. Joe’ and ‘Nowhereland’ starring Eddie Murphy, among others — we are as excited about the future as we are by reaching this milestone.”
Paramount’s forthcoming openings this year include DreamWorks’ Tropic Thunder starring Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr., and Jack Black (August 15), Paramount Vantage’s American Teen (July 25), DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (November 7), DreamWorks’ The Soloist starring Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey, Jr. (November 21), Paramount’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button starring Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett (December 19) and DreamWorks’ Revolutionary Road starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio (December 26).