History beckons Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story 3 this weekend as it prepares to become only the seventh film to join an elite club of box office titans on Friday [August 27].

The heroic antics of this latest instalment in an iconic animation franchise will be forever immortalised after it crosses $1bn in global ticket sales, bringing a much needed shot in the arm to what is shaping up to be an otherwise unremarkable session.

To date the film has amassed $997.5m worldwide and $592.9m overseas through Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International (WDSMPI), while the North American tally stands at $404.6m.

A slew of launches in Scandinavia combined with decent holdover business will provide more than enough firepower to secure the $2.5m required to push the film past $1bn and make it Disney’s second film this year after Alice In Wonderland to accomplish the feat.

Already the biggest aninmated global release in history and Disney’s biggest international film, Toy Story 3 ranks seventh in the all-time pantheon and is poised to overtake Warner’s Bros’ The Dark Knight this weekend. International highlights include an all-time high of $138m across Latin America, $111.2m in Japan where it ranked number one for five consecutive weeks, and a record for a Disney animated release in the UK on $102.4m that is the fourth biggest release in the territory.

“It’s been an incredible year as we saw the Pixar team bring Buzz and Woody back to the big screen and watched Tim Burton’s vision for Alice In Wonderland take the world by storm,” The Walt Disney Studios chairman Rich Ross said in a statement. “These box office triumphs prove that creative storytelling brought to life by imaginative, inspired and talented professionals is something audiences respond to the world over.”

The premium cost of 3D tickets has played a major role in catapulting three 3D films released in the last nine months into the top ten all-time list. Fox’s Avatar is king of the world on $2.74bn, while Alice in Wonderland is the fifth best worldwide performer on $1.02bn.

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice opens in Portugal through WDSMPI and stands at $96m.

Warner Bros Pictures International’s Inception may end the weekend as the overseas champion but it will face another strong challenge from Paramount/PPI’s The Last Airbender this weekend as the latter prepares to launch in China and Mexico.

Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi thriller has amassed $367.9m and should coast past $375m in the coming days. Family sequel Cats And Dogs 2 has reached $38.4m.

The Last Airbender crossed $100m this week and should consolidate through holdover business and those opening weekends in China and Mexico. The latest international running total is $102m.

Shrek Forever After has grossed $459.9m and can look forward to a strong debut in Italy on August 25. The First World War drama Beneath Hill 60 from Australia opens in New Zealand on August 26.

Fox International releases Avatar: Special Edition in a slew of territories, among them the UK, Australia, South Korea, Russia, Twaian and New Zaeland. Diary Of A Wimpy Kid on opens in the UK, whle Vampires Suck sinks its teeth into Australia, Holland and four others. Avatar grossed $1.997m in its original incarnation.

Universal/UIP opens the drama Charlie St Cloud in Russia on August 26, while Russell Brand and Jonah Hill will be looking to entertain audiences in Spain when Get Him To The Greek on $22.7m arrives on August 27.

Scott Pilgrim Vs The World is in the early stages of its run and opens in the UK on August 27. Despicable Me has grossed $66.1m.

Sony Pictures Releasing International’s hit family film Karate Kid has grossed $127.9m and opens in Brazil, Spain and Turkey.

The Angelina Jolie spy thriller Salt stands at $111.6m and arrives in France, French-speaking Switzerland and Poland. The comedy Grown Ups is on $59.4m and opens in the UK.

Summit International’s Step Up 3-D opens in Germany and stands at $55m. Letters To Juliet has grossed $17.1m and touches down in Italy.