Disney's latest animated film, "Moana," cruised to the top of the domestic box office over the weekend, clinching the second-highest Thanksgiving weekend opening of all time.
Garnering an estimated $81.1 million, the film, which features a female Pacific Islander, fell shy of the $93.6 million five-day opening that "Frozen" earned in 2013. Disney currently holds the top six five-day Thanksgiving debuts of all time.
"Moana" pulled in $55.5 million on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, helping Disney secure the top eight three-day Thanksgiving debuts of all time.
The film holds a 98 percent fresh rating from Rotten Tomatoes and was highly praised by critics and audiences.
"'Moana,' which sounds on paper like another rehash of the established and well-worn 'Disney Princess' narrative, but in practice is a progressive and rousing tale that becomes the crown jewel of the latest renaissance from the company," Andrew Parker, a writer with The Global and Mail and a top-rated critic on Rotten Tomatoes, said in his review.
The film is the feather in the cap of Walt Disney Animation Studios, which has cemented itself as a powerhouse in the animation business over the past 10 years.
The studio, which had box office highs in the late '90s with "Mulan" and "Tarzan," saw sales dip for almost a decade. While films still preformed well, garnering between $100 million and $350 million between 2000 and 2010, the company was unable to surpass $400 million at the box office until "Tangled" in 2010.