Broadway's The Lion King makes Disney more money than Star Wars

Ben Arnold

With all the talk of Star Wars: The Last Jedi set to be a massive earner for Disney, it’s worth putting its forthcoming box office glory into some kind of context.

Forbes reports that, in welcoming in the 20th anniversary of The Lion King on Broadway this year, the stage show adaptation of its classic animated feature has earned the Mouse House more than its Star Wars movies combined.

Its current box office take comes in at a staggering $8.1 billion, according to reports.

That’s easily more than all the new Star Wars movies (so far coming in with just over $3 billion in box office receipts), since Lucasfilm was bought up by Disney and began rolling out The Force to a new generation in 2012.

The figure makes the show the highest-grossing entertainment property in history, followed Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera, which has made $6 billion.

For even more context, the highest-grossing movie of all time is Avatar, which made $2.78 billion worldwide, or, if you account for inflation, Gone With The Wind, which made $3.4 billion.

Both are still dizzyingly short of The Lion King‘s staggering haul.

Once added together, all the Star Wars movies so far – not just Disney’s new efforts – have made $8.2 billion, a figure which will quickly be surpassed by The Lion King as it continues to run.

Where the galaxy far, far away has bested the sprawling savannah is on the merchandise front, however, which has earned the Star Wars franchise an eye-popping $37 billion since 1977.

But as far as box office receipts are concerned, Simba and his pals are the kings.

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