'Earth' Spins to Number Six on All-Time List

By Tom White

Earth, the debut film from the Walt Disney Company's Disneynature division, has, since its record-breaking premiere on Earth Day April 22, grossed a total of $15,217,689 through Tuesday, making it the sixth highest-grossing docs of all time, according to boxofficemojo.com

The Disneynature team ought to know how to sniff out a hit: Earth is helmed by Alastair Fothergill and Mark Linfield, whose Planet Earth, footage from which is repurposed in Earth, was a high-visibility project for Discovery Channel and BBC. Jean-Franco Camilleri, one of the co-producers on the Oscar-winning March of the Penguins, heads Disneynature, and the next film out of the Disneynature label, Oceans, is directed by Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud, whose Winged Migration grossed $11,689,053 in 2003.

Earth is the second doc to top the $1 million mark in 2009; the first was Ari Folman's Waltz with Bashir, now at $2,273,903. Here's a rundown of the top ten highest grossing docs of the year so far:

1) Earth (Dirs.: Alastair Fothergill, Mark Linfield):                    $15,217,689

2) Waltz with Bashir (Dir.: Ari Folman)                                   $  2,273,903

3) The Cross: The Arthur Blessit Story (Dir.: Matthew Crouch)  $   675,000

4) Valentino: The Last Emperor (Dir.: Matt Tyrnauer):               $   571,977

5) Every Little Step (Dirs.: Adam Del Deo, James D. Stern):      $   151,200

6) Brothers at War (Dir.: Jake Rademacher):                            $   113,674

7) Ballerina (Dir.: Bertrand Normand):                                      $     98,616

8) Enlighten Up! (Dir.: Kate Churchill):                                     $     93,311

9) Examined Life (Dir.: Astra Taylor):                                       $     87,700

10) Tyson (Dir.: James Toback):                                              $    85,046