Posted January 14, 2013 by Seth Paul in News

Box Office Weekend: Zero Dark Thirty Knocks Out Django Unchained

Zero Dark ThirtyWhile returns for the year are down from the end of 2012 and the new year’s debuts have failed to impress thus far, Django Unchained nevertheless failed to stay on top against one critically acclaimed film and two…well, not-so-acclaimed ones. Zero Dark Thirty, entering its fourth week of release with an expansion of nearly 3,000 new theaters, drew in the most crowds with an estimated $24 million. Whether the movie’s controversial usage of once classified intelligence drew in more crowds, pushed away more, or made no difference was not obvious, but it was a strong wide release start for the military thriller. Also, for those who thought parody films were dead, things are looking up for the release later this year of Scary Movie 5…previous Scary Movie star Marlon Wayans’ own spoof of horror films, A Haunted House, was not making friends with critics but made good on its budget. With a $2.5 million production cost (almost a parody of the low budgets most found footage movies have in the first place), A Haunted House rustled up an estimated $18.8 million, and held off fellow newcomer Gangster Squad. Despite an A-List cast, critics have not found much to like in the period crime drama, and with an estimated $16.7 million, it is likely to come up high and dry before reaching its $75 million costs.

Fourth through seventh place belongs to the big winners of late 2012, as Django Unchained (estimated $11.1 million), Les Misérables (estimated $10.1 million), The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (estimated $9.1 million), and Lincoln ($6.3 million, seeing a nice uptick in sales) all rest easy knowing they have joined the $100+ Million Club. Sure, returns on An Unexpected Journey have not reached the heights of Peter Jackson’s previous films (at least, if one does not include inflated 3D pricing), but they are still a massive take for a series that is likely to earn even more over its next two entries.

Box office winners but critical failures Parental Guidance and Texas Chainsaw 3D saw a revenue dip (Texas Chainsaw 3D massively so, from its 1st place finish last week) with an estimated $6.1 million and $5.2 million, respectively, but a familiar face long missing from the top ten made a return…Silver Linings Playbook, now in its ninth week at the box office, broke back onto the scene with an estimated $5 million, and while it too sits in domestic profitability ($41.3 million on a $21 million budget), it also can bask in the knowledge that it is a bit more liked than its current company, as it has received strong critical praise.

Weekend Box Office (January 11th – January 13th)

  1. Zero Dark Thirty…$24 million
  2. A Haunted House…$18.8 million
  3. Gangster Squad…$16.7 million
  4. Django Unchained…$11.1 million
  5. Les Misérables…$10.1 million
  6. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey…$9.1 million
  7. Lincoln…$6.3 million
  8. Parental Guidance…$6.1 million
  9. Texas Chainsaw 3D…$5.2 million
  10. Silver Linings Playbook…$5 million

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Seth Paul

Seth Paul

When not failing to write novels and screenplays, box-office guru Seth writes humorous comedy tracks for films under the name "The One Man Band" that can be found at Rifftrax.com. Although, he has recently succeeded in writing the novella "Jack Alan and the Case of the Not-Exactly Rocket Scientists," available as an eBook on Amazon. He is also the English voice of Zak in "Zak McKracken: Between Time and Space."

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