Beast proves to be an £18m beauty at the box office
Disney’s Beauty And The Beast has broken box office records after taking in £18.4m over its opening weekend.
It means the live-action version of the animated classic, which stars Emma Watson and Dan Stevens, is the fifth highest grossing three-day opening of all time and the highest grossing threeday opening weekend for a PG movie.
The Saturday box office of £7.9m was the second highest grossing Saturday ever, behind Star Wars: The Force Awakens In the UK and Ireland it also delivered the biggest Disney live-action opening of all time, the biggest March opening weekend of all time and the number one opening of 2017 to date.
It now has the biggest opening ever for a musical in the UK, ahead of Universal’s Les Miserables (£8.13m).
The movie also performed well at the US box office, opening with an estimated $170m (£137m) and setting a new high mark for family movies.
The film, directed by Bill Condon, was made for around $160m (£129m).
It has received widespread acclaim but also triggered controversy over what has been called a “gay moment”.
Character LeFou, played by Josh Gad, is the sidekick to the story’s villain Gaston and “is confused about his sexuality”, according to director Condon, who also described a brief scene as a “gay moment”.
Russia has banned children under 16 from watching it and Disney ended up shelving its release in Malaysia after refusing to allow the scene to be cut to appease censors.