Weekend Wrap-Up

Christmas Bonanza Continues at the Box Office

By John Hamann

December 30, 2007

Dr. Evil has more money than Santa.

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Finishing sixth is Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, the third Fox or Fox Searchlight film in the top six. AVPR earned $10.1 million, but had already earned $16.8 million over Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. The unnecessary sequel cost about $70 million to make, and has so far earned $26.9 million. While this is only a small amount of data to work with, AVPR should finish within the same ballpark as the original, which earned about $80 million.

Seventh place goes to The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep, the film from Sony, Revolution Studios and Walden Media. The Water Horse earned $9.2 million this weekend from 2,772 venues. Since being released Christmas Day, this $45 million film has earned $16.8 million, a respectable total. At RottenTomatoes, The Water Horse came in at 71% fresh, but I'm still not sure how it will fare in the New Year.

Eighth goes to P.S. I Love You, the chick flick with Hilary Swank and Gerard Butler. P.S. got a nice uptick over last weekend, earning $9.1 million over the post-Christmas frame. Last weekend, the romantic drama earned $6.5 million, so it receives an increase this weekend of 40%. Warner Bros. will be happy with a gross so far of $23.4 million.

Finishing ninth is Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street from director Tim Burton. The Johnny Depp musical earned $8 million in its second weekend, but was down from its $9.3 million debut from last weekend by 14%. The drop was not expected for Sweeney, and does not bode well for its future. Why Paramount decided to leave it on 1,249 screens is a bit of a mystery to me, and it will be interesting to see if they decide to increase the venue count in the weeks ahead. So far, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street has earned $26.7 million against a production budget of $50 million.


Finishing tenth is Enchanted, Disney's Thanksgiving surprise. Enchanted shows the power of a good Thanksgiving opener, as it earned $6.5 million this weekend - its sixth weekend of release. Compared to last weekend, Enchanted was way up - 54% - and this weekend's take is its best since December 7th, when it grossed a little over $10 million. So far, Enchanted has earned $110.7 million.

Other notable grosses this weekend include The Great Debaters from Denzel Washington, which grossed $6.3 million and has earned $13.5 million since opening Christmas Day, and Atonement, which earned $3.1 million this weekend from only 310 venues. Atonement, which is quietly stalking an Oscar, has earned $11.2 million so far.

Overall, there is much to crow about. The top 12 films at the box office earned a staggering $168.7 million, an increase over last year of 18% and a number usually reserved for a hot July weekend when the top ten is made up of blockbusters. That's a record for a three-day December weekend, edging past December 2003 when LOTR: Return of the King opened. That December 26th - 28th weekend, the top 12 rang up $165 million. The last time Christmas fell on a Tuesday was 2001, when the top 12 earned $147 million, well off what this year's weekend earned. Another huge factor of note is that if we use these estimates, 2007 was te top grossing year of all-time. Huzzah!

Top Weekend Box Office for 12/28/07-12/30/07 (Actuals)
Rank Film Distributor Estimated Gross Actual Gross Weekly Change Running Total
1 National Treasure: Book of Secrets Walt Disney Pictures $35,632,000 $35,672,708 - 20.3% $142,943,238
2 Alvin and the Chipmunks 20th Century Fox $30,000,000 $29,029,898 + 3.0% $153,632,443
3 I Am Legend Warner Bros. $27,525,000 $27,414,467 - 18.2% $206,129,574
4 Charlie Wilson's War Universal $11,767,750 $12,012,360 + 24.4% $41,703,310
5 Juno Fox Searchlight $10,300,000 $10,634,576 +210.5% $31,470,011
6 The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep Columbia Pictures/Sony $9,200,000 $9,186,054 New $21,681,680
7 Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem 20th Century Fox $10,050,000 $10,059,425 New $30,485,443
8 P.S. I Love You Warner Bros. $9,100,000 $9,289,337 + 43.3% $27,901,562
9 Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Paramount Pictures $8,000,000 $8,194,360 - 11.9% $30,609,858
10 Enchanted Walt Disney Pictures $6,500,000 $6,431,622 + 52.3% $113,913,026
11 The Great Debaters Miramax $6,304,000 $6,005,180 New $16,435,030
12 His Dark Materials: The Golden Compass New Line Cinema $4,350,000 $4,683,801 + 2.9% $61,280,000
  Also Opening/Notables
  The Bucket List Warner Bros. $323,000 $335,837 New $878,422
  The Orphanage Picturehouse $230,233 $233,323 New $338,024
  There Will Be Blood Paramount Vantage $185,525 $190,739 New $427,023
  Persepolis Sony Pictures Classics $91,107 $88,826 New $211,508
  Honeydripper Emerging Pictures N/A $9,863 New $13,856
Click here for all weekend data
Box office data supplied by Exhibitor Relations
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