How ‘Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax’ Went Big

'Over the last decade, March has been a hotbed for animated releases,' industry analyst tells MTV News.
By Kevin P. Sullivan

A scene from "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax"
Photo: Universal Studios

Taylor Swift can now add "box-office champion" to her list of accolades. "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax" scored huge numbers at theaters this weekend, ending up with an outstanding $70.7 million take and the biggest weekend of 2012 so far.

Dr. Seuss' little environmentalist surpassed all expectations on the way to its record-breaking bow; the film also contributed to a solid weekend on the whole, with ticket revenues up 27 percent from the same period last year.

With stars like Swift, Zac Efron, Ed Helms and Danny DeVito populating the cast, "The Lorax" not only had the benefit of being the first big-budget family release of the year, but also one with major stars.

Jeff Bock, senior box-office analyst for Exhibitor Relations, told MTV News that March has recently been a month made for strong animated openings, so the success of "The Lorax" isn't exactly shocking.

"Over the last decade or so, March has been a veritable hotbed for animated releases. In fact, six of the top 10 March debuts have been 'toons," Bock said. "Universal certainly had already been witness to the success of 'Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who!' which went on to gross over $150-plus million after a March 2008 rollout. So is this a surprise? Not really."

The success of "The Lorax" could potentially bode well for the rest of 2012's box-office prospects, especially with such big releases slated for the rest of the year. "The box-office surge of March should continue, as 2012 is packed with promise," Bock said. "The real question is whether or not summer will live up to expectations; those four months can make or break the entire year. With the triple threat of 'The Avengers,' 'The Amazing Spider-Man' and 'The Dark Knight Rises,' I certainly like our chances."

Check out everything we've got on "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax."

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