Despicable Me 2’s special July 4th was independent in more ways that one: it was Universals biggest ever opening for a movie, with a total of $34.3m on Wednesday, despite most American’s enjoying the seasonally good weather. This has set it up to perform well over the weekend, as those little minions continue to delight audiences.

Despicable Me 2 GruGru being a family man

The hilarious animation – starring Steve Carell as the evil genius-cum-family man Gru – followed up the impressive Wednesday with a solid Thursday, managing $23.5m. All in all, a domestic total of $84.3m so far is good going, especially considering it’s still got a holiday weekend to sell. Even better news for Universal is, considering it’s an animation, it was rather cheap, costing a mere $76m to make – it’s already broken even and more!

Watch the Despicable Me 2 trailer:

And in even better news, Despicable Me 2 outgunned its animated rival, Monsters University‘s, which managed a take of $30.5M when it opened on a Friday last month. A cast including Carrel, Kristen Wiig, Miranda Cosgrove, Russell Brand, and Benjamin Bratt is great, but it’s those ridiculously lovable little minions that keep people coming back. Their little shorts are reminiscent of Ice Age’s squirrel/acorn bits, and basically just as funny.

The film also proved to be The Lone Ranger’s downfall, overshadowing the Johnny Depp film’s opening, which only managed $9.6m. It’s not fair to blame Despicable Me 2 entirely, though; the fact that it’s a really, really bad film also has something to do with that.

Despicable Me 2 MinionThis minion is having a laugh