Django

Since Christmas it’s been a three way battle between Les Miserables, Django Unchained and The Hobbit, with Les Miz coming out in front at first. Then The Hobbit raced up to the front position, while Django and Les Miz were battling out, tooth and nail, neck and neck, for second place.

And the winner this weekend is…The Hobbit.

Django came in second, and Les Miz third, even though that film has a slightly higher total than Django due to that strong  Christmas day opening - $18 million compared to Django's $15.5 million opening. Still, that is the highest opening for an R rated film during the Christmas film season ever.

But most people are surprised by the very strong b.o. performance of Django, which is getting very strong buzz and, of course, controversy never hurts.

Film analyst and critic Erik Childress, who has a solid reputation about box office numbers, and appears every week on WCIU-TV Chicago giving his b.o. predictions, says that Django could be the No. 1 film next week, and could very well hit $150 million domestically, making it the biggest box office hit of Quentin Tarantino’s career, surpassing his previous biggest all time b.o. hit Inglorious Basterds, which grossed $120.5 million domestically.

And the overseas market for Django, in Europe, South America and especially Japan, where Django opens on March 1, and where Tarantino has a strong, avid following, even appearing in TV commercials there, could make Django the biggest grossing Tarantino film in foreign markets, as well once again surpassing Basterds.

Here's this weekend's B.O. list:

1) The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey WB $32,920,000 Total : $222,703,000
2) Django Unchained Wein. $30,688,000 Total :$64,008,000
3) Les Miserables Uni. $28,027,000 Total : $67,466,000
4) Parental Guidance Fox $14,800,000 Total :$29,589,000
5) Jack Reacher Par. $14,010,000 TotaL ;$44,661,000
6) This Is 40 Uni. $13,186,000 Total :$37,116,000
7) Lincoln BV $7,509,000 Total :;$132,039,000
8) The Guilt Trip Par. $6,700,000 Total :$21,102,000
9) Monsters, Inc. (3D) BV $6,363,000 TotaL ;$18,490,000
10) Rise of the Guardians P/DW $4,900,000 Total :$90,230,000
11) Skyfall Sony $4,600,000 Total :$289,600,000
12) Silver Linings Playbook Wein. $4,110,000 Total :$27,361,000