Weekend Wrap-Up

Unbroken, Into the Woods, Hobbit Light Up Christmas

By John Hamann

December 28, 2014

Hobbit celebration today!

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Eighth goes to The Imitation Game, which expanded this weekend to 747 venues from 34 last weekend. The expansion paid off handsomely, as the Benedict Cumberbatch starrer pulled in a healthy $7.9 million from those 747 screens, giving it a strong venue average of $10,616. Made for $15 million, The Weinstein Company appears to have a healthy hit on their hands, as The Imitation Game already has $14.6 million in the domestic kitty before appearing on 800 screens. Overseas, The Imitation Game has already pulled in $20 million plus from the UK alone, so it is already only a few million away from profitability.

Ninth goes to Exodus: Gods and Kings, which can’t even use the Christmas box office bonus to improve its sad fortunes and is just about the only film to not benefit this weekend. Exodus: Gods and Kings earned only $6.8 million, off 17% compared to the previous weekend. The $140 million wannabe spectacle has now earned $52.5 million at the domestic box office, but has earned $60 million plus overseas.

Tenth is Reese Witherspoon’s Wild, which adds a few more screens this weekend but still can’t find liftoff. Wild earned $5.4 million this weekend, which was up 32% compared to last weekend. Still, considering it has widened past 1,285 venues, this one still has room to grow, and has so far earned $16.4 million.

Big Hero 6 is also on the rise this weekend, as it improves on its $3.6 million take from last weekend. This time around, Big Hero 6 earned $4.8 million, a 33% increase compared to last weekend. The $165 million Disney/Marvel release has now earned $199.9 million stateside and $120 million plus from overseas venues, where it continues to expand.


The last new wide release this weekend, Tim Burton’s Big Eyes, stumbled heavily this weekend. Out to 1,307 venues, the Amy Adams/Christoph Waltz flick earned only $3 million, giving it an average of $2,285. The marketing failed this one, as it had decent reviews (73% fresh) and a strong cast. Can The Weinstein Company bail this one out? I doubt it, but it’s the Christmas season, so nothing is off the table.

In limited release, there were some big winners this weekend. The Interview, with its arthouse/VOD release, picked up $1.8 million from 313 theaters, which is better than, well, nothing. Selma, the Martin Luther King biopic from Paramount, debuted at 19 venues this weekend, and took in a powerful $590,000, giving it a venue average of $31,053. American Sniper with Bradley Cooper also popped, earning $610,000 from only four screens, giving it an incredible average of $152,500.

Overall this weekend, the box office was amazingly strong. The top 12 films pulled in a hot $189.4 million over three days this weekend, ahead of last year’s top 12, which earned $181.7 million. Next weekend, Relativity releases The Woman In Black 2 – this time without Harry Potter – so it should be a rematch of this weekend’s top three.

Top Ten for Weekend of December 26-28, 2014
Estimated Gross
Weekly Change
Running Total
1 The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Warner Bros. 41,420,000 -24% 168,522,000
2 Unbroken Universal 31,748,000 New 47,341,000
3 Into the Woods Walt Disney 31,021,000 New 46,105,000
4 Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb 20th Century Fox 20,600,000 +21% 55,307,000
5 Annie Sony 16,600,000 +5% 45,835,000
6 The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 Lionsgate 10,000,000 +27% 306,656,000
7 The Gambler Paramount Pictures 9,300,000 New 14,300,000
8 The Imitation Game The Weinstein Co. 7,930,000 +824% 14,631,000
9 Exodus: Gods and Kings 20th Century Fox 6,750,000 -17% 52,517,000
10 Wild Fox Searchlight 5,415,000 +32% 16,364,000
11 Big Hero 6 Walt Disney 4,854,000 +33% 199,933,000
12 Top Five Paramount Pictures 3,800,000 +6% 19,266,000

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