Studio Horse Race: Sony and Disney Cross $1B; Paramount Eyes Domestic Crown

Domestic box office revenue race between Paramount and Warner Bros. shaping up to be tight

If you like to watch big, multi-national entertainment companies count gobs of money and boast about who has more, we are fast approaching that time of year.

With Disney and Sony both reaching the $1 billion mark in domestic box-office revenue over the weekend, the overall 2011 revenue horse race is shaping up to be a close one between Paramount and Warner Bros. (see chart from BoxOfficeMojo.com below).

Warner is trying to secure a fourth consecutive year of market-share dominance and is currently ahead of No. 2 Paramount by $47.7 million.

But Paramount has number of notable fourth-quarter releases upcoming, starting next week with its "Footloose" remake, continuing on through part three of its very bankable "Paranormal Activity" franchise, as well as its next DreamWorks Animation distribution project, "Puss In Boots."

Paramount also has two big family adventure movies coming up with Martin Scorsese's "Hugo" and Steven Spielberg's "The Adventures of Tintin."

For its part, Warner has sequels to "Harold and Kumar," "Happy Feet" and "Sherlock Holmes," but will probably finish second based on remaining volume alone.

Another interesting race: not to finish last.

Universal, which has finished in the cellar in domestic revenue among Big 6 studios the last two years, is $152.9 million ahead of Fox through this weekend.

Universal's upcoming slate includes a prequel to the horror-sci classic "The Thing," another "Johnny English" comedy, and the Brett Ratner action-comedy "Tower Heist."

Fox's fourth-quarter lineup could be potent, however, starting with David Frankel ensemble comedy "The Big Year" next weekend. Also upcoming from Fox: futuristic Justin Timberlake thriller "In Time"; Jonah Hill comedy "The Sitter"; another CGI hybrid movie from the very profitable "Alvin and the Chipmunks" well; and the Cameron Crowe dramedy "We Bought a Zoo."