Holiday Box Office: 'Hobbit' No. 1 With $32.9 Mil; 'Django' Easily Beats 'Les Mis' for No. 2
Peter Jackson's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey stayed at No. 1 in its third weekend with $32.9 million, while Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained easily pulled ahead of Les Miserables to take the No. 2 spot at the domestic box office.
The trio of films have dominated the Christmas season. Hobbit, which opened Dec. 14, has grossed $222.7 million in North America and north of $600 million globally.
Django, from The Weinstein Co., took in $30.7 million during the weekend for a six-day total of $64 million. Universal's Les Mis, directed by Tom Hooper, posted weekend earnings of $28 million for a six-day domestic total of $67.4 million and a worldwide haul of $116.2 million.
Both films have outpaced expectations since debuting Christmas Day and, along with other movies, should see a nice boost on Monday and Tuesday (New Year's Day).
Starring Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz and Leonardo DiCaprio, Django is playing better to women than expected, with females making up 44 percent of the audience. African-Americans also are flocking to the movie about a slave who is freed by a bounty hunter, making up an estimated 30 percent of the audience. Django cost north of $87 million to make.
The film adaptation of the hit stage musical, Les Mis features an ensemble cast led by Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway, Russell Crowe and Amanda Seyfried. Les Mis, costing $60 million to make, has outperformed expectations at the North American box office, scoring the top opening day for a musical and the second-best Christmas Day opening of all time.
Moviegoing surged on the final weekend of the year, capping a record-breaking year for ticket sales in North America. Revenue will hit $10.8 billion on Monday, eclipsing the $10.6 billion earned in 2009 and up 5.8 percent over last year's $10.2 billion.
Attendance also made something of a recovery, with an estimated 1.36 billion people going to the movies in 2012, up 6 percent over last year's 16-year low of 1.28 billion.
But the Christmas season brought mixed results for Hollywood. Unusually crowded, there were eight nationwide releases between Dec. 19 and Dec. 25, leaving little room for error.
Family comedy Parental Guidance -- starring Billy Crystal, Bette Midler and Marisa Tomei -- has held steady at No. 4 since debuting Christmas Day, exceeding expectations. From 20th Century Fox, the $25 million movie took in $14.8 million for the weekend for a six-day total of $29.6 million.
Tom Cruise's Jack Reacher has done solid but unspectacular business since rolling out Dec. 21. The Paramount pic grossed $14 million in its second weekend for a domestic total of $44.7 million. Reacher, holding at No. 5, cost $60 million to produce.
Universal's This Is 40, from Judd Apatow and likewise opening Dec. 21, grossed $13.2 million over the weekend for a total take so far of $37.1 million. The R-rated pic cost north of $35 million to make.
Barbra Streisand-Seth Rogen comedy The Guilt Trip and Disney's rerelease of Pixar's Monsters, Inc., both opening Dec. 19, are considered DOA.
The $40 million Guilt Trip grossed $6.7 million for the weekend for a domestic total of $21.1 million. Monsters, Inc. took in $6.3 million for a total of $18.5 million. Andrew Adamson's Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Apart, playing in a modest 840 theaters, also has failed to find its footing, grossing $7.4 million so far for distributor Paramount.
The specialty box office also had its holiday winners and losers.
The Matt Damon-John Krasinski drama Promised Land, opening Dec. 28 in 25 locations, posted weekend earnings of $190,150 million for a disappointing location average of $7,606. The Focus Features movie reunites Damon with his Good Will Hunting director Gus Van Sant.
Focus is hoping the film's performance improves once the crowded holiday frame is over. On Jan. 4, Promised Land will be playing nationwide in 1,500 locations.
Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty continued to impress in its New York City and Los Angeles runs. The Sony movie earned $315,000 from five theaters for an impressive location average of $63,000 and a stellar cume of $1.4 million. The movie expands nationwide Jan. 11.
Sony Pictures Classics' Amour performed nicely in its second weekend, grossing $60,016 million from three theaters in New York and Los Angeles for a location average of $20,005 -- the second-best of the weekend after Zero Dark Thirty -- and cume of $217,791.
Documentary West of Memphis, likewise from Sony Classics, didn't fare as well. The film, opening Christmas Day, grossed $13,856 for the weekend from five locations for an average of $2,771.
David Chase's Not Fade Away also is faltering, grossing $56,000 in its second weekend from 19 theaters for a location average of $2,947 and cume of $97,000.
Here are the full results for the weekend of Dec. 28-20 at domestic box office:
Title, Weeks in release/Theater count, Studio, Three-day weekend total, Cume
1. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, 3/4,100, New Line/MGM, $32.9 million, $222.7 million.
2. Django Unchained, 1/3010, The Weinstein Co., $30.7 million, $64 million.
3. Les Miserables, 1/2,814, Universal, $28 million, $67.4 million.
4. Parental Guidance, 1/3,367, 20th Century Fox, $14.8 million, $29.6 million.
5. Jack Reacher, 2/3,352, Paramount, $14 million, $44.7 million.
6. This Is 40, 2/2,914, Universal, $13.2 million, $37.1 million.
7. Lincoln, 8/1,996, DreamWorks/Disney, $7.5 million, $132.3 million.
8. The Guilt Trip, 2/2,431, Paramount, $6.7 million, $21.1 million.
9. Monsters, Inc., 2/2,618, Disney/Pixar, $6.3 million, $18.5 million.
10. Rise of the Guardians, Paramount/DreamWorks Animation, $4.9 million, $90.2 million.