Gru (Steve Carell) meets Dru (Steve Carell) in "Despicable Me 3".
Oh brother. Gru (voiced by Steve Carell) is back, and this time he encounters his long-lost twin brother (creatively) named as Dru (also Steve Carell) where they join forces for one last heist.
1. Brand recognition
That's the premise for "Despicable Me 3", the long-awaited third instalment after four years since the second movie in 2013.
As one of the highly-anticipated summer movies of 2017, here are the reasons why "Despicable Me 3" might dominate the box office this month.
Gru's tiny henchmen, the Minions, are the very brand that represents Illumination
By now, most seasoned moviegoers would know the famous Illumination Entertainment production company, particularly with the appearance of the Minions for their opening credits logo. The studio's first animated movie, "Despicable Me" was an overnight success when it opened in the mid-summer of 2010. It went on to rake over USD540 million in the worldwide box office against a moderate USD69 million budget, which was more than enough to greenlight a sequel. Although it took the studio three years to deliver a sequel, the wait was well worth it. Not only did "Despicable Me 2" get nominated for 2 Academy Awards including Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song for Pharrell's "Happy", it even made more money than the first one (USD970.8 million vs. USD543.1 million!). Of course, much of the success of the first two "Despicable Me" movies were largely owed to the...
2. The return of the yellow little creatures
The Minions are back in "Despicable Me 3".
... Minions themselves! Sure, these mischievous yellow little creatures who speak gibberish are nothing more than side characters, but they are the main reason that most of the audience fell in love with the "Despicable Me" movies in the first place. Depending who you ask, they can be either adorable to some or annoying to others. Still, it's hard to deny the longevity of their existence. It's safe to say they deserve a place as one of the most beloved animated characters ever seen in recent years. In fact, the Minions are so phenomenally popular that their own 2015 spin-off movie piled up over USD1 billion at the worldwide box office. With the Minions making their return for the fourth time in "Despicable Me 3", expect another bout of yellow fever all over again.
3. The two Steves
Gru and Dru (both voiced by Steve Carell) in "Despicable Me 3".
Apart from the return of the Minions, one of the biggest novelty factors of "Despicable Me 3" is the introduction of Gru's long-lost twin brother, Dru. Again played by Steve Carell, it would be interesting to see the comedian tackling a dual role in this third instalment of the "Despicable Me" franchise. Although Gru is not as wildly popular as the Minions, Carell's role remains instrumental to the franchise as a whole.
4. A tried-and-tested entertainment for various demographics
Gru (Steve Carell) and his nemesis, Balthazar Bratt (Trey Parker) in "Despicable Me 3".
The "Despicable Me" movies may have been a kiddie flick, but this lucrative franchise managed to prove its worth as an animated series that appeals to both the young and old, regardless of them being male or female. Not to mention it is the kind of movie that attracts most families to bring their kids to the cinemas and watch it together. Besides, this is also one of the reasons that made the first two "Despicable Me" movies and the "Minions" spin-off rake over US$2 billion at the worldwide box office. No doubt an impressive feat to gross that much with just three movies so far.
5. It was a right timing
It's fun time with the Minions in "Despicable Me 3".
Every summer movie season needs a few high-profile animated features to entice both the kids and family audiences. The first one out is Pixar's "Cars 3", which is scheduled to be released in the US on June 16th (whereas we have to wait longer until August 24th). Then there's "Despicable Me 3", which will open in the stateside at the end of June. This gives the Illumination Entertainment's third instalment of the "Despicable Me" franchise plenty of room for themselves to rake as much money as they can during the opening weekend at the US box office. Even with "Cars 3" and "Transformers: The Last Knight" opening a week apart from each other before "Despicable Me 3", those two aforementioned blockbusters would already be front-loaded (a term used by Hollywood where the audiences turn out in droves to watch the movie in the opening weekend) by then. "Despicable Me 3" also has the benefit of being the last major animated release this summer until Sony's "The Emoji Movie" lands in July, which gives the movie plenty of chance to do a repeat businesses at the box office.
"Despicable Me 3" opens in cinemas nationwide on 15 June 2017.
Cinema Online, 11 June 2017