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Box Office: The Holidays are ‘Just Getting Started’

For the second weekend of December, the new blockbusters have backed off for that awkward dead zone between Thanksgiving and Star Wars: The Last Jedi. With two major comic book movies, two word-of-mouth indie comedies and a stellar Disney animated film on the menu, it’s not surprising that few studios would want to bring something new to this weekend.

The only new film this week debuting with a wide release is the Morgan Freeman/Tommy Lee Jones comedy Just Getting Started. And the results are not good. For being released in over 2,000 theaters, the film brought in an abysmal $3 million, placing it at #10 for the weekend. The only other new release is the Tonya Harding movie I, Tonya but it’s currently only playing in 4 theaters.

The Disaster Artist, the comedy biopic about terrible filmmaker Tommy Wiseau, has expanded this weekend and is starting to make a more significant dent. The critically acclaimed picture that stars James Franco, Dave Franco and Seth Rogen has been added over 800 more theaters and did an excellent job bringing in roughly $6.4 million. Word of mouth has been getting around fast about the film and coming in at #4 for the weekend with such a theater account is rather impressive.

Another expanding indie comedy is the coming-of-age story, Lady Bird, expanding to another 300 theaters. In its sixth week, it has only dropped one slot from last week, bringing in $3.5 million and placing its total gross at $22 million. Time will tell if it sticks around for the rest of the month.

A surprise improvement in the rankings has come with Sony’s The Star, an animated religious family movie, moving up a slot after expanding into an additional 150 theaters and earning $3.6 million. It’s total gross after four weeks has been $32 million, not too shabby for a film that cost Sony $20 million to make.

Comic book movies continue to linger. After over a month in the theaters, Thor: Ragnarok remains in the top 10, now crossing over $300 million for its domestic gross. This weekend saw the Marvel hero picture take in $6.2 million, dropping only one slot in the ranking. Justice League may not have been a critical success, but it’s still hanging in there for another week in the #2 spot. The DC Comics long-awaited ensemble picture brought in another $9.5 million, bringing its domestic gross to $212 million. Not terrible, but very underwhelming for what should be considered the crown jewel of the DCEU.

No surprise for remaining at #1 for its third weekend in a row is Coco, Pixar’s latest film about the mythology of the Day of the Dead. Its earnings for the weekend were $18.3 million, bringing its total domestic gross to $135 million. Much like with Justice League, this feels a little underwhelming for what is easily one of Pixar’s most celebrated films to date. It will hopefully have enough appeal to carry it through into the holiday season when going up against the likes of Blue Sky’s Ferdinand. Of course, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that it will be dominated by Star Wars: The Last Jedi this weekend.

The full box office stats are listed below.

Coco ($18,303,000)
Justice League ($9,595,000)
Wonder ($8,450,000)
The Disaster Artist ($6,435,514)
Thor: Ragnarok ($6,291,000)
Daddy’s Home 2 ($6,000,000)
Murder on the Orient Express ($5,100,000)
The Star ($3,675,000)
Lady Bird ($3,547,469)
Just Getting Started ($3,181,568)

Next weekend, expect to see Star Wars: The Last Jedi in the #1 slot with its weekend total in the high triple digits, somewhere between $150 million and $250 million. Coco will most likely hold steady at #2 with Ferdinand nipping close behind.


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