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Beauty and the Beast (Disney)

'Beauty and the Beast' broke record after record with its opening weekend

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"Beauty and the Beast" made history after just a few days in theaters.

The live-action remake of the 1991 classic raked in an estimated $170 million in North America in its opening weekend, good for the best opening weekend in March and the seventh-best opening weekend overall, Variety reports. The movie cost $160 million to make and made $350 million worldwide.

The previous record-holder for March was "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice," which earned $166 million last year.

Actors Dan Stevens, left and Emma Watson pose for photographers ahead of a screening for the Beauty And The Beast Premiere, in London, Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP)

Actors Dan Stevens, left and Emma Watson pose for photographers ahead of a screening for the Beauty And The Beast Premiere, in London, Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP)

"Beauty and the Beast" also broke records for opening weekends by a PG-rated movie, beating 2016's "Finding Dory." It was the fourth-highest-earning Saturday ever, raking in $64.8 million that day.

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This image released by Disney shows Josh Gad as Le Fou, left, and Luke Evans as Gaston in a scene from, "Beauty and the Beast," opening nationwide on March 17. (Laurie Sparham/Disney via AP)

The movie was marked by controversy over its "gay moment" that sparked boycotts and kid-unfriendly ratings overseas. Disney opted not to air the movie in Malaysia at all. 

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Emma Watson arrives at the world premiere of "Beauty and the Beast" at the El Capitan Theatre on Thursday, March 2, 2017, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Emma Watson, who plays Belle, also faced controversy after a Vanity Fair photoshoot led some to call her a "bad feminist." Private photos of her were also reportedly leaked online, sparking her to promise legal action.

[It] is the latest example of Disney's perfectly executed strategy of ... dusting off a classic and reinventing it as a modern live-action movie.
Paul Dergerabedian, comScore

The movie has been generally well-received, with a 71 percent "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes and "generally favorable" reviews, according to Metacritic.

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