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'Moana' song work an oasis from 'Hamilton' craze for Miranda

'Moana' song work an oasis from 'Hamilton' craze for Miranda

Disney's Moana made an outstanding performance at the box office, raking in $15.7 million during its first day of release, leaving its competitors to bite the dust.

We segue into a buddy movie when Moana teams up with the preening, trash-talking, formerly powerful demigod Maui, who is voiced by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, who is quite good with the comedic byplay and not awful when called upon to sing.

Also, Disney has had a hot streak at the Thanksgiving box office. The studio has ruled the holiday weekend with hits like "Tangled" in 2010, "Frozen" in 2013 and "The Good Dinosaur" a year ago. It washed down its hard-drinking humor with a box office of just more than $1 million on Thursday, for a two-day total of nearly $3 million.

Estimates for "Moana" say it could easily top at least $85 million, and counting. That's a bump from original estimates of $75 million - so it keeps getting closer to "Frozen's" $93.6 million five-day debut.

Actors Alan Tudyk, Rachel House, Auli'i Cravalho, Dwayne Johnson, Nicole Scherzinger, and Temuera Morrison attend The World Premiere of Disneys "MOANA" at the El Capitan Theatre on Monday, November 14, 2016 in Hollywood, CA. (In fact, there's not a prince in sight in this movie.) She is a smart, independent, fearless and adventurous explorer, she is a loyal friend, she has a deep and powerful love for her family, and she is a Girl Power role model swooping into theaters and onto the pop culture landscape at just the right time. "This guy could read the phone book and people would line up at the multiplex to see him".

Disney is on a hot streak at the box office.

Disney's animated Polynesian adventure "Moana" led USA moviegoing on Thanksgiving Day with $9.9 million at 3,875 locations as it heads towards the $85 million to $90 million range during the five-day holiday break. Since then, Disney Animation has rebounded with a list of critically acclaimed blockbusters like "Tangled", "Wreck It Ralph, "Frozen", "Big Hero 6" and "Zootopia".

Disney looks like it is beating itself going into this Thanksgiving weekend. Moana, daughter of a Pacific Islands chieftain and future ruler of her tribe, hates being patronized, or told what's off-limits.

"Who doesn't love Hawaii?" "The Times said that "'Bad Santa 2' relies entirely too much on the salty stuff, offering an opportunity for audiences to titter at the fire hose of vile gutter humor that leaves no one unsullied, and delves into some truly dark places". Against her parents' wishes, she must get in touch with her seafaring ancestry and leave her island, Motunui, to restore the glowing green heart of stone to the goddess Te Fiti.

Marketing for "Moana" has been stellar. Most years can only bank on a few worthwhile animated features - a Disney, a Pixar, a Ghibli and maybe a wildcard from someplace like Laika - but this year has seen more than just the usual suspects.

Johnson's catchy song, "You're Welcome", will stay stuck in your head for days and Moana's "How Far I'll Go" might be the next "Let It Go".

Reviews have been great as well - the film has a CinemaScore of A and a Rotten Tomatoes fresh rating of 97 percent. The newest cinematic entry to the ever-expanding Potterverse pulled in strong mid-week numbers, posting $11 million on Wednesday, even in the wake of Moana's rise.

But this is a princess with a lot of pep in her step. "The film is Disney's first explicitly female-centric musical film since Frozen and is directed by a duo that is responsible for "The Little Mermaid" and the 'Aladdin'".