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Weekend Box Office Report: December 19-21, 2014

12.21.2014

The Hobbit battles to #1!

The halfling hero and his considerable supporting cast won the war at theaters this weekend, putting THE HOBBIT: THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES at the top of the box office with an estimated $56.2 million!

The grand finale of director Peter Jackson's second Tolkien trilogy came in lower than THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG's $73.6 million first weekend, although THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES has made $90.6 million since its Wednesday opening. The PG-13 fantasy spectacle has also gathered an additional $265 million from international audiences.

Critics handed the climactic clash of various men and non-men a barely passing grade (60% average on Rotten Tomatoes), but audiences gave the tale's conclusion an 'A-' CinemaScore.

Coming in second place was another colon-ized trilogy ender, Ben Stiller's family comedy NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: SECRET OF THE TOMB, with a $17.3 million opening weekend. That's not even a third of the $54.1 million opening of NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM II's debut in 2009 (it went on to $177 million domestic and $413 million worldwide). Critics thought the franchise was ready for storage, giving it 49% on Rotten Tomatoes (crowds scored the latest exhibit a 'B+').

The weekend's other new offering, the Jamie Foxx/Quvenzhane Wallis update of the classic Broadway musical ANNIE, opened in third with $16.3 million. Critics sent the new ANNIE back to the orphanage with a 29% average on Rotten Tomatoes, but moviegoers clapped along to the precocious kid's hard knock life with an 'A-' CinemaScore.

Last weekend's winner, the Christian Bale biblical epic EXODUS: GODS AND KINGS, was booted down to fourth place with $8 million, a drop of 66.6% (hmmm...) from its opening as it just scraped past $100 million globally. Right behind Moses was THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 1 (the fourth subtitled movie in the top half of the list) with $7.7 million as it reached $623 million worldwide.

Marching up to sixth place was the Reese Witherspoon drama WILD with $4.1 million as it expanded to just over 1000 screens, while Chris Rock's R-rated comedy TOP FIVE went out of the Top 5 from fourth to seventh with $3.5 million, a dip of 48% from its opening last week.

Family CG 'toons BIG HERO 6 and PENGUINS OF MADAGASCAR wrestled for the bottom with $3.5 million (each should see a boost with the holiday break, and Disney's feature will cross $200 million), and they both faced a surprise challenger in the new Bollywood comedy-drama P.K., which entered the list in tenth.

Outside the chart, we waved goodbye to DUMB AND DUMBER TO, HORRIBLE BOSSES 2, the Stephen Hawking biopic THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING and Christopher Nolan's INTERSTELLAR (which has collected $635 million worldwide). Limited releases of THE IMITATION GAME and Paul Thomas Anderson's INHERENT VICE are still bringing in strong per-screen averages.

Next week offers several gifts on Christmas Day, including Mark Wahlberg as THE GAMBLER, the big-budget fairy tale musical INTO THE WOODS, and director Angelina Jolie's inspirational war drama UNBROKEN, plus limited releases of Tim Burton's BIG EYES, Clint Eastwood's AMERICAN SNIPER, and the Civil Rights drama SELMA.

Enjoy your holiday!

What is your favorite Christmastime movie? VOTE HERE!

# MOVIE TITLE WKND $ TOTAL $
1. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies $56.2 M $90.6 M
2. Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb $17.3 M
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3. Annie $16.3 M
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4. Exodus: Gods and Kings $8 M $38.9 M
5. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 $7.7 M $289.2 M
6. Wild $4.1 M $7.2 M
7. Top Five $3.5 M $12.4 M
8. Big Hero 6 $3.5 M $190.4 M
9. Penguins of Madagascar $3.5 M $64.1 M
10. P.K. $3.5 M
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Source: Box Office Mojo

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