March 7, 2014
Hobbit 2 climbs to top of box office elite
Catching Fire outshines worldwide success of prequel Hunger Games
Undaunted hobbits trumped princess power at the box office. Per studio estimates yesterday, Warner Bros. Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug was No. 1 at the weekend box office with US$73.7 million, besting last weekend’s No. 1 film, Disney’s animated fable Frozen. Melting down to the No. 2 position, Frozen earned US$22.2 in its third weekend, bringing its impressive overall domestic ticket total to nearly US$164.4 million.
Despite its first place position, The Desolation of Smaug fell short of topping its prequel’s debut. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which opened this same weekend last year, gained US$84.6 million. It earned US$131.2 million in international sales.
Lionsgate’s holiday-themed Tyler Perry’s a Madea Christmas came in third place with US$16.2 million. “All of the Tyler Perry movies have done in that US$20 million plus range, but the weather was a factor in some of the performances of these films,” said Dergarabedian.
Another Lionsgate film, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, earned US$13.2 million for the fourth place slot. To date, Catching Fire has grossed US$739.9 million, surpassing the worldwide box office total for The Hunger Games, which brought in US$691 million.
Disney’s super hero sequel, Thor: The Dark World, continues to thrive as it remained in the top five with US$2.7 million, bringing its domestic total to US$198.1 million.
In its second weekend, Relativity Media’s redemption drama Out of the Furnace, starring Christian Bale and Casey Affleck, dropped to the sixth position with US$2.3 million after opening in the third place slot.
Disney’s comedy Delivery Man, with Vince Vaughn as the lead, dropped in at No. 7 in its fourth weekend at the box office with US$1.9 million, bringing its domestic total to US$28 million.
The Weinstein Co.’s Philomena, starring Judi Dench, who received a best-actress Golden Globe Awards nomination for her performance as a nun in search of her son, landed in the No. 8 spot at the weekend box office with US$1.8 million.
In its sixth weekend at the box office, Fox’s Nazi Germany-set The Book Thief, starring Emily Watson, Geoffrey Rush and Sophie Nelisse, held the ninth position with US$1.7 million. Coming in at No. 10 was the Jason Statham and James Franco-starring Open Road crime thriller Homefront, which gained US$1.6 million in its third weekend. Its total domestic gross is now US$18.4 million. With only a few weeks left in the year for moviegoers to populate the multiplex, the wide selection of impressive films fares well for eclipsing 2012’s box office record of US$10.8 billion.