‘Trolls World Tour’ Breaks Video on Demand Record in 1st Weekend, Universal Says

Animated sequel was most-rented film in its opening weekend on FandangoNOW VOD streaming service

Trolls World Tour
DreamWorks Animation

“Trolls World Tour” has posted the highest opening day and opening weekend release ever for a film released digitally, Universal said on Monday.

The film was the highest-grossing VOD title ever in terms of revenue, Universal said, though no specific numbers were provided. The studio did add that the figures were approximately 10 times higher than that of Universal’s next-biggest opening day for a traditional digital release.

“Trolls World Tour” even posted the best-ever opening weekend on the VOD streaming service FandangoNOW and also hit No. 1 on Amazon, Comcast, Apple, Vudu, Google/YouTube and DirecTV.

The studio says specific statistics will be shared in the coming weeks. The film was made available for digital rental for 30 days for $19.99 with a 48-hour viewing period.

While Universal says the animated sequel hit an all-time digital record, it’s unclear just how high those numbers are or how they compare to what the film may have earned from a theatrical release. For comparison, the first “Trolls,” released in November 2016, had a $46.5 million opening weekend in theaters and went on to gross $153.7 million in North America and $346.8 million worldwide, on a budget of roughly $125 million. At its retail price of $19.99, “World Tour” would have had to sell just over 2.3 million rentals this past weekend to match the earnings made by its predecessor’s theatrical opening weekend.

As movies first started to shift on the release slate due to the pandemic, Universal was swift to move up the release of “Trolls World Tour” and planned to release the animated sequel day-and-date on VOD and in theaters over the Easter weekend. Universal did on Friday release the film in 21 drive-in theaters that remain open across the country, but with traditional theaters shuttered across the country, the animated sequel effectively made its debut digitally.

On FandangoNOW in particular, “Trolls World Tour” was the most pre-ordered title of all time, and over the weekend it became the best-selling film in its opening day and the best-selling film over the three-day weekend. The previous record holder in terms of revenue on the VOD service for a three-day weekend, though not an opening weekend, was Universal’s horror movie “The Invisible Man,” which also got an early VOD release after opening in theaters in February. Other Universal titles that made the shift to streaming included “The Hunt” and Focus Features’ “Emma,” which the studio says are all experiencing strong holdovers.

Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake lead the voice cast of “Trolls World Tour,” which is a sequel to the 2016 DreamWorks Animation film from 2016 “Trolls.” Poppy (Kendrick) and Branch (Timberlake) discover that they are but one of six different Trolls tribes scattered over six different lands and devoted to six different kinds of music: Funk, Country, Techno, Classical, Pop and Rock. “Trolls World Tour” is directed by Walt Dohrn, who also served as co-director on the original film.

Below is Fandango’s Top 10 for the past week, from Monday through Sunday.

  1. “Trolls World Tour”
  2. “Bad Boys for Life”
  3. “Sonic the Hedgehog”
  4. “Birds of Prey”
  5. “The Invisible Man”
  6. “Dolittle”
  7. “The Call of the Wild”
  8. “Like a Boss”
  9. “Bloodshot”
  10. “Jumanji: The Next Level”