The box office results for the weekend of December 21st – 23rd has The Hobbit holding off four new arrivals as studios unleash their Christmas holiday slate. Here are the studio estimates:

1. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey ($36.7 million)

2. Jack Reacher ($15.6 million)

3. This Is 40 ($12 million)

4. Rise of the Guardians ($5.9 million)

5. Lincoln ($5.6 million)

6. The Guilt Trip ($5.3 million)

7. Monsters, Inc. 3D ($5 million)

8. Skyfall ($4.7 million)

9. Life of Pi ($3.8 million)

10. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 ($2.6 million)


In week #2, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey took an unwelcoming path. Dropping nearly 60% from its monster opening weekend, this, though now up to $149.8 million, is shaping up to be a mild disappointment on the domestic front when compared to its predecessors. And keep in mind, this sucker has the benefit of 3D ticket pricing. With Christmas Day falling on a Tuesday, and the expected bump from people having the week off and venturing into the theaters, Peter Jackson’s prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy could make up some ground in the next 5 days. The eye-catching opening weekend was obviously supported strictly by rabid fans – which could lead to this performing similar to, dare I say it, a Twilight flick (that was painful).

And since it was brought up The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 is now up to $281.7 million; good for 3rd highest grossing in the franchise on the domestic front.

Skyfall and Lincoln currently hold the longest streaks in the top ten with 7 weeks apiece. The 23rd Bond entry is now up to $279.5 million, while the award hopeful project from Steven Spielberg is up $116.2 million stateside.

Now for the newbies:

Jack Reacher had a production budget of $60 million and will be banking on Cruise’s international drawing power to see the black ink.

Judd Apatow’s latest, This Is 40 is in better shape stateside as it rang up a relatively cheap $35 million production bill. Plus, it has more universal appeal than Reacher.

Speaking of universal appeal, the people financially vested in The Guilt Trip will be hoping for the theater holiday uptick as well. With a production budget of $40 million, and the reviews leaning more towards the naughty than nice, this will need all the help it can get during its theatrical run. This will most likely get lost in the holiday shuffle though as more new guys show up on Christmas Day.

And on Christmas Day, blockbuster level features show up in Les Miserables and Django Unchained. Playing to the alternative crowd, not interested in the genre flicks, is Parental Guidance. Reviews will be right here my fellow Shockers!

The Hobbit

By Joe Belcastro

Joe Belcastro is an established movie critic in Tampa, Florida. As a member of the Florida Film Critics Circle, most of his time is spent reviewing upcoming movies. He also covers news pertaining to the film industry, on both a local and national level as well as conducting interviews. To contact Joe Belcastro regarding a story or with general questions about his services, please e-mail him and/or follow him on Twiiter @TheWritingDemon.

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