As Hollywood studios scramble to find ways to better profit in the increasingly lucrative overseas market, Universal Pictures (NASDAQ:CMCSA) can rest a little easier knowing that it crossed the $2 billion threshold at the overseas box office for the first time ever in the studio’s 101 year history. Furthermore, recent moves by Universal show that it isn’t exactly taking this time to gloat.
Despite the unbelievable success Universal has seen this year at the box office, the studio recently went through a major shake-up at the top — a move seen by many industry insiders as surprising given the type of year the studio has been having. Universal Pictures chairman Adam Fogelson was ousted early last week, putting Jeff Shell in charge of worldwide operations with the newly minted title chairman of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group.
Of course, given that Universal just broke the $2 billion threshold overseas for the first time ever, it’s a little ironic that the recent shake-up is being seen as a move to position the studio well in an increasingly international-based film market. Following the news, NBCU chief executive Steve Burke said, “Jeff is perfectly positioned to lead our film group at a time when global expansion is more important than ever.” All that being said, let’s check out the top six films that pushed Universal over the $2 billion threshold this year.