Box Office Report: 'Texas Chainsaw' Massacres the Competition, Wins Friday
In a surprise upset, Lionsgate's Texas Chainsaw 3D placed No. 1 at the Friday box office with a healthy debut of $10.2 million.
The R-rated film is now expected to win the weekend with a gross in the $21 million to $25 million range, marking a victory for Lionsgate.
Pre-release tracking had suggested that holdovers The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and Django Unchained would battle it out for No. 1, followed by Les Miserables.
Picking up where Tobe Hooper's 1974 classic slasher film left off, Texas Chainsaw earned a C+ CinemaScore. Normally, a poor grade would spell trouble for a film's playability, but horror films often receive a C.
Django, from the Weinstein Co., came in No. 2 on Friday, grossing $6.2 million for a domestic total of $92.4 million. The Quentin Tarantino film is expected to earn in the $19.5 million range for the weekend.
Peter Jackson's The Hobbit and Tom Hooper's Le Mis were in a relatively close race Friday.
Hobbit came in slightly ahead, grossing $5.2 million for a domestic total of $251.5 million. Overseas, the New Line and MGM tentpole has earned north of $500 million.
Universal's Les Mis placed No. 4 with $5 million for a domestic total of $92.5 million.
Both Les Mis and Django will jump the $100 million mark this weekend at the North American box office. Les Mis will reach the milestone faster than any other musical and, combined with international earnings, will have grossed nearly $185 million worldwide by Sunday.
Family comedy Parental Guidance rounded out the top five domestically, grossing $3.1 million on Friday for a domestic cume of $45.8 million.
Matt Damon-John Krasinski drama Promised Land continued to struggle as it expanded nationwide. From director Gus Van Sant, the movie placed No. 9 on Friday with a gross of $1.3 million from 1,675 theaters.
Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty continued to dominate at the specialty box office even as the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee said it would investigate whether the CIA gave classified information to Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal.
On Friday, after playing in only New York and Los Angeles since Dec. 19, Zero Dark Thirty expanded into another nine cities, grossing $825,000 from 60 theaters for a location average of $13,750 and domestic total of $2.2 million.
Zero Dark Thirty, chronicling the government's decade-long hunt for Osama bin Laden, is projected to take in a stellar $2.5 million to $3 million for the weekend. The film expands nationwide Jan. 11.