Given how fondly the animated original is remembered and considering it was ranked as one of the most highly anticipated films of the year on IMDB, it's hardly a surprise to learn that Beauty and the Beast is having a successful opening weekend at the box office. 

What is surprising though is just how successful an opening it's turning out to be. According to Mashable, the Emma Watson starring film is estimated to take a mammoth $170m at the US box office this weekend. Which would make it the seventh highest opening weekend of all time and the highest ever opening weekend for a March release. The record for a March release is currently held by Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice at $166m. 

The most incredible statistic though is that the film will make more money at the box office this weekend alone than the original did in its entire theatrical run. The animated classic finished up with $145.9m at the US box office during it's 1991 release. 

The film's success hasn't been limited to just the US though. According to Variety, the film is expected the finish the weekend with global opening of $350m.

If Beauty and the Beast's success has confirmed anything it's that Disney's live action remakes of their animated classics aren't going to stop anytime soon. 

Did you go see Beauty and the Beast this weekend? You can see what we thought of the film here.