Movie ticket sales in the U.S. hit a 25-year low of 1.24 billion in 2017. Unfortunately for theater owners, 2018 appears to be no different. Rising ticket prices – which topped $9 for the first time this year – have helped soften the blow, yet the improving quality of home theaters and media ensures that American movie theaters will continue to feel pressure.
Despite this downward swing, the past year has had a number of blockbusters that had no problem of attracting moviegoers. Of the 675 major films released so far in 2018, 26 have grossed over $100 million at the domestic box office. While this figure is down from 44 films out of 480 in 2002 – the year in which ticket sales peaked – it nevertheless illustrates that there are still films that can make serious money at the U.S. box office.
Among the year’s top-earners are numerous comic book-based movies, proving that the nation’s superhero obsession is still going strong. Five of these films – not including the superhero-themed “Incredibles 2” – have grossed over $200 million at the box office, thereby accounting for half of the year’s top 10 theatrical success stories.
Another four of the 26 highest-grossing films are almost fully computer-animated. Movies for families and children often do well at the box office, and computer animation has been one of the most popular genres of films aimed at this demographic. Non-animated family films that appear on the list include “A Wrinkle in Time,” “Ready Player One,” and “Solo: A Star Wars Story.”
To identify the top grossing films of 2018, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed gross domestic movie theater ticket sales for U.S. films from movie ticket tracking website Box Office Mojo as of Nov. 27, 2018.