The Playlist

Box Office: 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' Delivers Biggest December Opening In History

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 16, 2012 12:10 PM
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  • 7 Comments
Despite being the latest entry in a well-loved Oscar-winning series with a billion-dollar final installment, expectations were tempered for "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." Unlike the previous trilogy, reviews were a bit more mixed this time around, and some fans wondered if a trilogy was really necessary from the comparatively thin source material. The nerdcore and critics were particularly vocal about the film's 48 fps format (though it was only featured at 461 of the film's engagements, a fraction of screens). But even with those hurdles, Peter Jackson's latest foray into Middle Earth collected $84.8 million, the biggest opening weekend in December history, easily topping the $73 million 'Return Of The King' grabbed in 2004.

Box Office: 'Playing For Keeps' Misses The Goal As 'Skyfall' Returns To #1

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 9, 2012 12:25 PM
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  • 2 Comments
The weekend after Thanksgiving is usually a down time, but studios ordinarily have a big bopper out during this timeframe. But this opening frame for December was fairly quiet, giving "Skyfall" a chance to take the top spot one more time before this month's blockbusters hit theaters. The picture has been a monster, now becoming Sony's top grossing picture of all time, with $1 billion worldwide in its sights. The franchise may be 50 years old, but 007 has never been more popular.

Box Office: 'Twilight' Stays At #1, 'Killing Them Softly' Worst Brad Pitt Wide Release Opening In 18 Years

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 2, 2012 11:43 AM
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  • 31 Comments
The post-Thanksgiving weekend is usually fairly slow business and this three-day frame was no exception. “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2” ruled the roost for a third consecutive week, pulling in numbers to suggest that through five movies, this series had leveled-off domestically into consistent “Are you kidding?” box office tallies. “Twilight” has come to a close as a story, but as a brand, it’s hard to believe Lionsgate is going to call it quits, particularly as this entry is set to become the biggest in the franchise worldwide. With Lionsgate/Summit crossing a cool billion both stateside and overseas, it’s going to be hard to turn down a film series capable of goosing those numbers.

Box Office: 'Twilight' Shimmers Over Record-Breaking Thanksgiving Weekend

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • November 25, 2012 2:03 PM
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  • 12 Comments
Nothing says Thanksgiving like turkey, football, and Michael Sheen’s wildly inappropriate laughter. Minor anomalies amidst the numbers suggest there is a chance we’re looking at the biggest 'Twilight' film thus far, as “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2“ dominated the marketplace once again to lead the biggest Thanksgiving weekend in box office history. Its pace remains slightly below series best 'New Moon,' but it looks like it should finish ahead of the other films in the franchise.

Box Office: 'Twilight' Rings Up $140 Million For #1, 'Skyfall' Becomes Biggest Bond Ever

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • November 18, 2012 12:14 PM
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  • 10 Comments
Decline of western civilization, moviegoers aren’t smart, cinema is dead, bla bla bla. Edward and Bella performed yet another hit-and-run on the box office this weekend, and while “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2” closes this particular story with a $140 million three-day opening, you’d have to be a Grade-A Moran to think that a series that consistently produces $100 million plus weekends is going to be put into storage by Lionsgate, even if the studio now has a new ATM machine in “The Hunger Games” films.

Weekend Box Office: 'Skyfall' Scores Best James Bond Opening Ever; 'Lincoln' Smashes In Limited Release

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • November 11, 2012 12:24 PM
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  • 9 Comments
“Casino Royale” proved to be the highest grossing Bond film of all time with $594 million in receipts worldwide six years ago. And “Skyfall” will beat that record within three week of its domestic bow? After wrecking international crowds with $320 million as of last Wednesday (becoming the biggest Bond in U.K. history), this massive first weekend American gross of $87.8 million bumped “Skyfall” numbers over $500 million today. That's $518 million in 17 days. Not too shabby.

Weekend Box Office: 'Wreck-It Ralph' Levels Up To First Place With Biggest Disney Animation Opening Ever

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • November 4, 2012 11:57 AM
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  • 8 Comments
A week after theaters on the East Coast faced Hurricane Sandy, business was back to normal in Hollywood, with Disney debuting “Wreck-It Ralph” to a nearly $50 million gross. This is the biggest stateside Disney Animation Studios opening ever, which, coming off the acquisition of Lucasfilms, suggests the studio has had a very good week. U mad, Hollywood?

Weekend Box Office: 'Argo' Takes Top Slot As 'Cloud Atlas' And Other New Releases Crash & Burn

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 28, 2012 12:48 PM
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  • 5 Comments
In one of the weakest weekends of the year which may yet get weaker thanks to the oncoming Frankenstorm (stay safe, East Coasters), the only real winner was Ben Affleck's "Argo." It's rare for a movie to make it to number one several weeks into release, but the actor/director's political thriller has had outstanding word of mouth, and though it dropped a touch more than its record-breaking hold last weekend, managed to rise up to the top with a $12.4 million haul. It's still the second-lowest number one of the year, but for a third week of release, still very strong numbers, and the film should carry on steaming towards $100 million, though the competition is going to be fiercer in the next few weeks.

Box Office: 'Paranormal Activity 4' Scares Up The Top Spot This Weekend

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • October 21, 2012 11:55 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Prepare for the paradigm shift. No one at Paramount is shedding tears that “Paranormal Activity 4” is set to open lower than the second and third films in the series. One very obvious reason for this is the series itself, which allows for very low production costs. The latest film in the horror franchise, bringing in $30 million this weekend, was the most expensive of the lot, and it still only cost $5 million. But, more importantly, worldwide the picture is looking at another $30 million, and like the third entry, its overseas receipts should handily overpower domestic grosses. Good on Paramount, who have been MIA for FIVE months, their last release being “The Dictator.”

Box Office: 'Taken 2' Takes Top Spot For 2nd Weekend

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • October 14, 2012 1:17 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Despite a recent lull in box-office activity, the last two weeks feel distinctly like summer sessions, with “Taken 2” pulling in blockbuster numbers at the top spot. Though critical reception was harsh, the picture seems as if it will lose only slightly more than half its audience in its second frame, when most figured it would lose a significant percentage from that opening weekend.

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