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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.




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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
Rank
Film
Distributor
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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