So all the director changes, all the creative tug-of-wars look to have paid off:
Hotel Transylvania may turn out to be Sony Pictures Animation’s biggest all-animated box-office hit ever. According to studio estimates, the $85m-budgeted Hotel Transylvania — with the box-office-boosting assistance of 3D surcharges — took in $11m at 3,349 North American sites on Friday, Sept. 28, and is expected to gross near $40m by Sunday evening. ...
If so, that’s about $10m more than early Friday estimates indicated; it’s considerably more than the amount earned by the previous Sony Pictures Animation all-animated domestic box-office champ, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs; and it means that the terrible domestic box-office drought may have come to a close. Hotel Transylvania could even end up boasting the most successful September opening ever at the domestic box office.
Making an animated feature ... even one that's not a blockbuster ... is difficult (like slinging fifty-pound chunks of concrete day after day.) So it's nice to see HT exceed expectations by a wide margin.
Not only does it speak volumes about the picture and its dedicated crew. But it points to the strength of animation as a crowd-pleasing, story-telling medium.
(The picture above? It was cribbed from one of HT's fine animators.)
Add On: We can say that the new 'toon overperformed by a wide margin:
In a sizable victory for Sony, 3D toon Hotel Transylvania debuted to an estimated $43 million -- the biggest opening since The Dark Knight Rises and the top September bow ever. It's also the best performance to date for the studio's animation unit.