“Beauty and the Beast” is a Box Office Success Because… Female Power?

Pamela McClintock of The Hollywood Reporter reported Monday, March 20th, 2017 on the opening weekend box office of Disney’s newest film, “Beauty and the Beast”, which was a remake of the 1991 Academy Award winning film (Best Original Song). While the film itself is nothing spectacular, it is a remake of a film that masses are familiar with after all, familiarity might be its biggest strength (and it is).  McClintock states that the new film has “the seventh-biggest domestic opening weekend of all time” making it the largest box office start of all time for a PG rated film (McClintock 2017). As fantastic as this is, McClintock takes on a Feminist position, noting that the film is coming out when “Hollywood is under fire for not promoting more women both behind and in front of the camera” (McClintock 2017). The reason for the box office success, McClintock argues, is due to the familiarity with the property and that women came in droves to see the film:

“On Friday, females of all ages made up more than 70 percent of Beauty‘s audience, in line with Twilight and Hunger Games, according to comScore’s PostTrak, the industry leader…. The studio says for the weekend as a whole, females made up 60 percent of all ticket buyers, while males increased to 40 percent…” (McClintock 2017).

The film could possibly earn around $1 Billion at the worldwide box office, according to Paul Dergarabedian of comScore, who says that: “The movie is already a modern classic that in its original animated form was a touchstone movie for older audiences and became a beloved mainstay on home video for younger fans who could not wait to see Emma Watson personify the role of Belle in live-action form” (McClintock 2017).

While McClintock is correct in stating that females trumped men in terms of audience and that previous female targeted films like “The Hunger Games” series, “The Twilight” series and so on are box office successes due to the female demographic that is draws; and, while it is a great statement Dergarabedian made, the article completely disregards (without a single mention) of the family demographic. Most likely, those numbers include families with young girls – “Beauty and the Beast” is a great film for the family to see and it currently has no competition in terms of the family market, due to “The Lego Batman Movie” already having been out for a little more than a month. Instead, McCormick chose a more feminist approach and while it is agreeable to believe, it is extremely misleading.

Work Cited

McClintock, Pamela. “‘Beauty and the Beast’s’ Secret to Success: Female Power and Comfort.” The Hollywood Reporter. N.p., 20 Mar. 2017. Web. 20 Mar. 2017.


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