When we think of kid’s movies our minds tend to go straight to animation and their charming characters/bright colors. However, animation has developed considerably over recent years from hand-drawn cartoons, and many animation movies delivered by Hollywood have performed incredibly well.
The 4 Highest-Grossing Kids Movies
Unsurprisingly, many of Disney’s movie re-releases have experienced lucrative success. This success was amplified with their acquisition of Pixar in 2006, of which the likes of Toy Story and Finding Nemo were high grossing performers.
Let’s take a look at the highest-grossing kids movie franchises.
So, what is it about these particular animated kid’s films that have made them so hugely successful? We would argue that one of the most significant contributing factors to the success of these films is that they have the charming ability to attract both kids, their parents and adults.
Despicable Me, Toy Story, Finding Nemo & Frozen all expertly weave the lives of children and adults together. By featuring cute and humorous characters they attract young children, whilst the complex storylines with deeper meanings are enjoyed by older generation audiences.
Let’s take a closer look at why these ‘kid’s’ movies have found tremendous success by captivating the interest of older audiences.
4 reasons why adults enjoy animated films as much as kids
Perhaps one of the contributing factors to why adults are intrigued by these animated movies is that they allow for escapism, allowing them to reminisce on life as a child. Bills did not exist, playing and laughing was a daily experience and excitement was found in the smallest of things.
This is particularly true for Toy Story 3 where the audience comprised of close to 50% of adults between the ages of 17-24. This percentage of the audience grew up with the franchise and its famous characters such as Woody and Buzz.
As the saying goes, age is nothing but a number.
By nature, the characters featured in the animated movies demonstrate the importance of having friends and forming close relationships. It is through these connections, that the characters are able to inspire bravery (consider Dory’s role in supporting Nemo’s father in Finding Nemo), open-mindedness and loyalty.
Of course, we cannot ignore the undeniable appeal of happy endings, that no matter what happens, everything will resolve itself in the end. Much like adult life, the movies include obstacles that need to be overcome and the ups and downs of friendship. It seems that these ‘kid’s’ movies offer life lessons to its audiences, no matter their age.
Yes, these animated films certainly have children creased over from laughter. However, there is often a hidden layer of mature humor that adults will understand when they watch it.
For instance, Disney/Pixar’s profitable Despicable Me features a scene in which the lovable Minions are denied access to the Tower of London without an adult. To overcome this they dress up like a normal sized lady to sneak in. During the scene, a Frenchman gets caught staring at “her” chest.
Another example is from Toy Story 3 when the Barbies at Al’s Toy Barn draw a lot of attention from the other toys, who are clearly attracted to them. Mr. Potato Head later finds himself with the Tour Guide Barbie & repeats to himself, “I’m a married spud, I’m a married spud…”
4. Real Home
Watching the animated films as an adult stirs up considerable emotion, emotions that many have likely experienced in their own lives. For instance, when Andy from Toy Story moves away to college and is forced to give away his toys. Or, when Nemo becomes increasingly independent and Marlin struggles to accept his growth.
It is clear that much of these Animated Movies success if down to their ability to captivate the heart and interest of not only the younger generation, but adults too.
With stats, such as “Toy Story 3” showing that 40 percent of its nonfamily audience came from people between the ages 17 to 24, the success of animated movies is clearly largely driven by adults, and their perception of the film. In order to experience such success, filmmakers need to draw on the above elements in order to appeal to a broad audience of different ages.
Despicable Me | Generated over $3.5b of box office sales from its franchise
Toy Story | Generated over $3b of box office sales from its franchise
Finding Nemo | Generated over $1.9b of box office sales from its two movies (Finding Nemo & Finding Dory)
Frozen| Generated over $1.3b of box office sales from its 2013 Movie