The 25 Highest-Grossing Media Franchises of All Time

Did you grow up watching Pokémon or collecting Pokémon cards? Or perhaps you discovered the colossally successful entertainment franchise during the Pokémon Go craze. Launched on July 6, 2016, a record-breaking 130 million people downloaded the free app. Today, the Pokémon Go community is still thriving with over 5 million players. It made an estimated 795 million dollars worldwide in 2018 alone. This contributed to Pokémon being the highest grossing media in global history.

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The top 25 highest grossing media franchises of all time worldwide (by total revenue in U.S. dollars) are as follows:

  1. Pokémon – $92.121 billion
  2. Hello Kitty – $80.026 billion
  3. Winnie the Pooh – $75.034 billion
  4. Mickey Mouse & Friends – $70.587 billion
  5. Star Wars – $65.631 billion
  6. Anpanman – $60.285 billion
  7. Disney Princess – $45.187 billion
  8. Mario – $36.143 billion
  9. Shōnen Jump / Jump Comics – $34.117 billion
  10. Harry Potter – $30.871 billion
  11. Marvel Cinematic Universe – $29.128 billion
  12. Spider-Man – $27.078 billion
  13. Gundam – $26.457 billion
  14. Batman – $26.448 billion
  15. Dragon Ball – $24.031 billion
  16. Barbie – $24.003 billion
  17. Fist of the North Star – $21.818 billion
  18. Cars – $21.794 billion
  19. Toy Story – $20.743 billion
  20. One Piece – $20.515 billion
  21. Lord of the Rings – $19.937 billion
  22. James Bond – $19.900 billion
  23. Yu-Gi-Oh! – $19.848 billion
  24. Peanuts – $17.428 billion
  25. Transformers – $17.220 billion

Pokémon was created in 1996, meaning that it has earned an average of nearly $4 billion a year. This number is impressive, but it does not fully convey what franchises have been wildly successful in recent times. While not included in the top 25, the film Frozen earned $11.3 billion in just 6 years!

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is estimated to have grossed over $29 billion including box office, merchandise, home entertainment, and comic volume revenue; over $19 billion came from the box office alone. It’s important to note that this estimate was calculated BEFORE the release of Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame which have already added billions to the MCU’s total gross and Endgame is only just getting started!

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