New Year's Box Office: 'Jumanji' Almost Catches Up With 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi'
'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' — already topping the $1 billion mark globally — and 'Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle' have dominated the year-end holidays, capping a rough-and-tumble year at the domestic box office.
Disney and Lucasfilm's The Last Jedi has crossed the $1 billion mark at the global box office on its way to becoming the top-grossing release of 2017, besting Beauty and the Beast.
Overall, it's looking like a relatively strong New Year's weekend in terms of moviegoing. That's good news for the film business, which needed to close a troubling year-over-year gap as much as possible. Revenue for 2017 came in at $11.12 billion, down 2.3 percent from last year's record $11.4 billion. Several weeks ago, the gap was more than 4 percent. It's only the third time that domestic revenue has crossed $11 billion. The bummer stat — attendance looks set to hit a 22-year low. Conversely, global revenue hit an all-time high of $40 billion, thanks to growth at the foreign box office.
Last Jedi has stayed atop the box-office chart throughout the year-end holidays, grossing another $52.7 million from 4,232 theaters for the three-day weekend and a projected $68.1 million for the four-day holiday frame, putting the Rian Johnson-helmed film's North American total at roughly $532.8 million through Monday. Overseas, the pic served up another $68 million, for an international total of $523.3 million and a global haul of $1.04 billion (Beauty and the Beast grossed $1.26 billion).
So far, Last Jedi is pacing more than 25 percent behind the $742 million earned by Star Wars: The Force Awakens two years ago over the holidays. At the same time, Last Jedi is about to pass the entire lifetime gross of stand-alone film Rogue One: A Star Wars Story ($1.06 billion). Johnson's film has yet to open in China, where it is set to bow Friday.
Sony's holiday hit Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle wasn't far behind Last Jedi over the weekend. The reboot grossed $50.4 million domestically from 3,765 locations for the three days and a projected four-day haul of $66.5 million. It should finish the weekend with a domestic tally of $185.8 million or more.
Internationally, Welcome to the Jungle also impressed, earning $67 million from 50 markets for a foreign total of $153 million and a global take of $323 million through Sunday.
After Last Jedi and Welcome to the Jungle, results were decidedly mixed for other holiday wide releases.
Universal's Pitch Perfect 3 continued to hold at No. 3. The threequel, fueled by younger females, earned $16.8 million from 3,468 locations for the three days and is estimating a $21 million four-day weekend. The movie's domestic total through Monday is an estimated $67.5 million, nearly 45 percent behind Pitch Perfect 2. Overseas, the film took in another $13.1 million this weekend for a foreign total of $28.6 million and north of $95 million globally.
Regular franchise stars Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld, Brittany Snow, Anna Camp, Hana Mae Lee, Ester Dean, Alexis Knapp, Chrissie Fit, Kelley Jakle, Shelley Regner, Elizabeth Banks and John Michael Higgins all return in Pitch Perfect 3.
Fox and Chernin Entertainment's The Greatest Showman, starring Hugh Jackman as circus impresario P.T. Barnum, continues to struggle at the box office, but is enjoying a huge 73 percent jump over Christmas weekend. The movie grossed $15.6 million from 3,316 theaters for the three days and a projected four-day gross of $20.8 million and a domestic total of $54.3 million through Monday. The movie is drawing strong exit scores from adults, even though it was sold as a family film amid fierce competition from Star Wars and Jumanji.
Overseas, Greatest Showman took in $28.5 million from 58 markets for a foreign tally of $35.2 million.
Animated entries Ferdinand and Coco are placing No. 5 and No. 6, respectively, in North America with a projected four-day weekend of $14.6 million and $8.8 million.
Focus Features' specialty title Darkest Hour, starring Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill, is in a close battle with Ridley Scott's All the Money in the World for the No. 7 spot, despite playing in far fewer theaters.
Successfully expanding nationwide into a total of 943 theaters, Darkest Hour grossed $5.5 million for the three days, putting its four-day earnings at an estimated $7.59 million for a domestic total of $20.2 million through Monday.
All the Money in the World, which is still trying to find its way after debuting on Christmas Day, earned $5.6 million from 2,074 theaters for the three days and a projected four-day gross of $7.54 million and domestic total of $14.7 million through Monday. In a Herculean effort, Scott raced to finish his movie in time for its year-end release after replacing disgraced actor Kevin Spacey with Christopher Plummer, a pricey decision requiring reshoots and a new marketing campaign.
Sony's TriStar Pictures is handling the film domestically, while STXfilms has international duties. All the Money in the World took in $1.4 million this weekend from six foreign markets for an international tally of $1.7 million. Recounting the kidnapping of J. Paul Getty's grandson, the movie also stars Mark Wahlberg and Michelle Williams.
The holiday season's two bombs are Alexander Payne's most ambitious film to date, Downsizing, and Alcon/Warner Bros.' male-skewing comedy Father Figures (both are rated R).
From Paramount, Downsizing earned $4.7 million from 2,664 theaters for the three days for a projected four-day gross of $6.1 million and domestic total of $18.6 million through Monday. The previous regime at the studio made the satire, which stars Matt Damon as a man who decides to be shrunken down in order to live like a king. The actor has had a tough year, between this and George Clooney's Suburbicon.
Father Figures fared even worse. The male-skewing comedy grossed $3.8 million from 2,902 theaters for the three days, with a projected $5.1 million for the four days. That would put the film's North American cume at a dismal $14.1 million through Monday. The pic, which follows two brothers who set out to find their biological father, stars Owen Wilson and Ed Helms. J.K. Simmons, Katt Williams, Terry Bradshaw and Ving Rhames co-star.
Father Figures could lose the No. 10 spot to Guillermo del Toro's prestige title The Shape of Water starring Sally Hawkins. Swimming into a total of 756 cinemas over the holidays, the adult fairy tale earned $3.5 million for the three days for a projected four-day gross of $4.9 million. Shape of Water, which is eyeing a domestic tally of $17 million through Monday, earned seven Globe nominations, the most for any film.
Among specialty players, a bright spot for Fox is Steven Spielberg's The Post, which is tipped to post a stellar location average of $85,111 in its second weekend, the best of any film. Playing in nine theaters, the Pentagon Papers drama stars Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks.
Paul Thomas Anderson and Focus Features' Phantom Thread, which stars Daniel Day-Lewis and bowed on Christmas Day, is likewise impressing with a projected four-day theater average of $76,259.
STXfilms also debuted writer-director Aaron Sorkin's Molly's Game on Dec. 25, but opted for a wider footprint. Starring Jessica Chastain, the film grossed $2.3 million from 251 theaters for the three days. Its estimated four-day gross is $3.2 million for a theater average of $11,461 and early total of $6.1 million. The big test will come when Molly's Game expands nationwide on Jan. 5.
Launching in four theaters over New Year's weekend was Sony Pictures Classics' Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool, starring Annette Bening. Facing plenty of competition, the film's location average for the weekend looks to be about $12,000.
Dec. 31, 8 a.m. Updated with revised grosses.
Jan. 1, 10 a.m. Updated with revised grosses.