Special Report

100 Top Grossing Movies of All Time

Charles Stockdale

Source: Courtesy of Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

80. Finding Dory (2016)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $501,491,833
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $486,295,561
> Estimated tickets sold: 56.2 million
> Starring: Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Ed O’Neill

The sequel to “Finding Nemo” (2003) was a huge success, grossing more than half a billion dollars at the domestic box office when adjusted for inflation. The movie stars Ellen DeGeneres as the absent-minded fish Dory on a mission to find her lost parents.

Source: Courtesy of Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

79. Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker (2019)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $501,982,983
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $501,982,818
> Estimated tickets sold: 56.2 million
> Starring: Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Adam Driver

Last year’s entry to the Star Wars franchise, “The Rise of Skywalker” has the lowest critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes of all movies in the series at 52%. Despite the negative reviews, the movie is the 79th top grossing movie of all time, having sold more than 56 million tickets since its release.

Source: Courtesy of Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

78. Beauty and the Beast (2017)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $507,207,926
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $504,014,165
> Estimated tickets sold: 56.8 million
> Starring: Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans

There have been numerous versions of “Beauty and the Beast” released over the years, with Disney’s 2017 live action remake being the most successful at the domestic box office. For comparison, Disney’s 1991 animated version grossed $405 million, adjusted for inflation.

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

77. Smokey and the Bandit (1977)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $507,517,797
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $126,737,428
> Estimated tickets sold: 56.8 million
> Starring: Burt Reynolds, Sally Field, Jerry Reed

With an estimated production budget of less than $5 million, “Smokey and the Bandit” sped to the top of the box office, grossing more than $126 million in 1977. The movie follows Burt Reynolds’ Bandit as he accompanies Jerry Reed’s Cledus on a mission to pick up a truckload of beer in Texarkana, TX, and deliver it back in Atlanta, GA, in 28 hours.

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

76. Tootsie (1982)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $508,151,827
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $177,200,000
> Estimated tickets sold: 56.9 million
> Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Jessica Lange, Teri Garr

Dustin Hoffman stars as Michael Dorsey — a down on his luck actor who pretends to be a woman in order to get work — in this Oscar-winning film from director Sydney Pollack. The intelligent and moving comedy was the second-highest grossing movie released in 1982, behind “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.”

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

75. Superman (1978)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $512,439,120
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $134,451,603
> Estimated tickets sold: 57.4 million
> Starring: Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder, Gene Hackman

The popularity of superhero movies is not a new phenomenon, as evidenced by the success of “Superman” in 1978. The movie, which currently has a 94% Freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes, spawned three sequels with star Christopher Reeve.

Source: Courtesy of Buena Vista Pictures

74. The Sixth Sense (1999)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $514,181,363
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $293,506,292
> Estimated tickets sold: 57.6 million
> Starring: Bruce Willis, Haley Joel Osment, Toni Collette

Filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan’s engrossing movie about a boy who sees — and can communicate with — the deceased was the second highest grossing movie in 1999 behind only “Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.” The movie is also Shyamalan’s most critically successful to date, with a Rotten Tomatoes Freshness rating of 86%.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

73. The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $514,205,474
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $448,139,099
> Estimated tickets sold: 57.6 million
> Starring: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway

Director Christopher Nolan’s follow-up to “The Dark Knight” (2008) is the second most successful Batman movie to date at the domestic box office. It is also the second most critically successful live-action Batman movie, behind only its predecessor.

Source: Courtesy of New Line Cinema

72. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $515,487,822
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $342,551,365
> Estimated tickets sold: 57.7 million
> Starring: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Viggo Mortensen

The second film in the trilogy, “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers,” outgrossed the first film, “The Fellowship of the Ring,” which was released one year prior. The Oscar-winning sequel has the highest rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes among franchise films, with an exceptional 95% Freshness rating.

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

71. Back to the Future (1985)
> Domestic gross (adj. for inflation): $529,016,772
> Domestic gross (unadjusted): $211,159,762
> Estimated tickets sold: 59.2 million
> Starring: Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson

Michael J. Fox stars as Marty McFly — a teenager who finds himself transported 30 years into the past — in this comedy from director Robert Zemeckis. The movie was the top grossing film of 1985 and currently possesses a 96% rating from critics and 94% from audience members on Rotten Tomatoes.