'The Grinch' Remake Tops 'Home Alone' as Highest-Grossing Holiday Movie

Christmas is in the rearview mirror, but Universal and Illimination's animated take on Dr. Seuss' The Grinch is still in theaters around the world and recently became the highest-grossing holiday movie, topping Home Alone.

According to Box Office Mojo, The Grinch has taken in just over $500.5 million worldwide since it was released on Nov. 9. The film has made $269.8 million in North America alone, with $230.7 million coming in from international markets. The film reportedly cost $75 million to make.

The Grinch is also the highest-grossing holiday movie ever, topping the 1990 classic Home Alone. The Macaulay Culkin-starring movie grossed $476.7 million worldwide.

The film's success proves just how beloved Dr. Seuss' character still is around the world. The Grinch's first appearance in a book came in 1957's How The Grinch Stole Christmas!, which was then turned into a classic 1966 TV special featuring Boris Karloff. Later, the Grinch appeared in other Dr. Seuss animated specials. In 2000, Ron Howard directed How The Grinch Stole Christmas!, featuring Jim Carrey as the Grinch. Like the new film, that movie was an international phenomenon, grossing $345.1 million worldwide.

The Grinch was also the third-biggest animated movie of 2018 globally. Disney's Incredibles 2 grossed $1.2 billion worldwide, while Sony's Hotel Transyvania 3: Summer Vacation reeled in $527.3 million.

Illumination also earned its sixth $500 million grossing film. The studio is best known for producing the Despicable Me movies, Sing and The Secret Life of Pets. Their next film, The Secret Life of Pets 2, hits theaters on June 7.

In the new film, Benedict Cumberbatch voiced The Grinch, with Cameron Seely as Cindy Lou Who and Rashida Jones as Cindy's mother. Kenan Thompson, Angela Lansbury, Pharrell Williams, Scarlett Estevez and Sam Lavagnino round out the voice cast. Scott Mosier and Yarrow Cheney directed, with a screenplay by Michael LeSieur and Tommy Swerdlow.

In a recent interview with CNN, Cumberbatch said the story remains timely, even if the book is more than 60 years old.

"When he [Grinch] realizes that Christmas isn't about materialism, it is about joy and kindness and generosity, he says love and kindness are the things we need most and the world needs a lot of love and kindness at the moment," the actor said.

Cumberbatch said he liked the "challenge" of voicing the character, adding, "It's not the first iconic character I've done, and hopefully it won't be the last. What a great role to be asked to play."


The highest grossing film of 2018 in North America was Disney's Black Panther, which made $700 million domestically. The Grinch was the seventh-highest grossing film in North America, coming ahead of Mission: Impossible - Fallout's $220.2 million total.

Photo credit: Universal Pictures