Paramount Pictures hits $1 billion domestic gross mark

Mumbai: Paramount Pictures Corporation has crossed the $ 1 billion milestone on its domestic gross sales, making it the first studio to do so in 2008. It outdid last year’s billion-dollar record by nearly three weeks.

This marks back-to-back years of firsts for Paramount Pictures and five consecutive weeks of holding the number one spot in domestic market share. The studio also set a new first—having the top three grossing films of 2008 at mid-year.

The half-year got off to a start with JJ Abrams’ thriller Cloverfield earning $80 million. Paramount was further buoyed by the successes of Marvel Entertainment’s Iron Man ($305 million), Lucas Films’ and Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull ($291 million) and DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda ($156 million).

"It has been a wonderful year so far. As we look towards the rest of 2008, and into 2009 — when we will have Transformers II, JJ Abrams’ Star Trek, G.I. Joe and NowhereLand starring Eddie Murphy, among others — we are as excited about the future as we are by reaching this milestone," said Paramount chairperson Brad Grey.

The studio’s forthcoming films in 2008 include DreamWorks’ Tropic Thunder starring Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr., and Jack Black, American Teen, DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, DreamWorks’ The Soloist starring Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey, Jr., The Curious Case of Benjamin Button starring Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett and DreamWorks’ Revolutionary Road starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio.