In a groundbreaking deal, the final two episodes of the fourth season of Game of Thrones--as well as an exclusive trailer for Season 5--will play in North American IMAX locations from January 23-29.
"IMAX always seeks innovative ways to provide moviegoers a unique and differentiated experience and today's partnership with HBO and Game of Thrones achieves just that," said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond. "This deal also furthers our efforts to offer exhibitors the opportunity to participate in alternative forms of content in a new and exciting way."
By Daniel Garris
Warner's The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies took in $21.73 million this weekend to lead the weekend box office for a third consecutive frame. The third and final installment of Peter Jackson's The Hobbit trilogy was down a significant 47 percent from last weekend. All previous Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films have experienced declines in the 40 percent to 49 percent range the weekend after New Year's and that trend held up for The Battle of the Five Armies. The film surpassed the $200 million domestic mark this weekend and has grossed $220.60 million in 19 days. That places The Battle of the Five Armies 9.5 percent ahead of the $201.54 million 19-day take of last year's The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug and 7 percent behind the $238.00 million 19-day gross of 2012's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
Disney's Into the Woods remained in second place this weekend with $18.73 million. The modestly budgeted Rob Marshall directed musical featuring Meryl Streep was down 40 percent from last weekend. Into the Woods has grossed a strong $90.87 million in eleven days. That places the film 6 percent ahead of the $85.54 million eleven-day gross of 2008's Bedtime Stories and a slim 2 percent behind the $92.48 million eleven-day take of 2012's Les Misérables. Into the Woods continued to run neck and neck with Universal's Unbroken this weekend and total grosses for the two films are separated by just $3.22 million thus far.
Unbroken placed in third with $18.17 million. The Angelina Jolie directed war drama was down a respectable 41 percent from last weekend. While Unbroken has shown some relative front-loading thus far, in the bigger picture the film has grossed a significantly stronger than expected $87.65 million in eleven days thanks in part to its very strong Christmas weekend start. Unbroken is running 10.5 percent ahead of the $79.29 million eleven-day take of 2008's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and 5 percent behind the $92.45 million eleven-day gross of 2012's Django Unchained.
The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death debuted in fourth place with a surprisingly strong $15.03 million start. The PG-13 rated horror sequel from Relativity exceeded expectations, which had been muted in part from soft pre-release online activity heading into the weekend. The film's debut was especially good news for Relativity given that the film was an inexpensive acquisition for the distributor. Early January is historically a good time to release horror films and that certainty was the case for The Woman in Black 2. The film opened 28 percent below the $20.87 million start of 2012's The Woman in Black (a CBS Films release), which was quite respectable given that The Woman in Black 2 doesn't feature Daniel Radcliffe. The Woman in Black 2 received a C rating on CinemaScore.
Fox's Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb claimed fifth place with $14.52 million. The third installment of the Ben Stiller led franchise continued to display impressive holding power as it was down just 28 percent from last weekend. Secret of the Tomb has grossed $89.85 million in 17 days. That places the film 3 percent behind the $92.73 million 17-day gross of 2011's Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked. The current total gross to opening weekend ratio for Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb already stands at 5.25 to 1.
Annie placed in sixth with $11.25 million. Sony's musical remake starring Quvenzhané Wallis, Jamie Foxx and Cameron Diaz also held up nicely this weekend as it fell 32 percent from last weekend. Annie has grossed a very solid $72.46 million in 17 days. That gives the film a current total gross to opening weekend ratio of 4.57 to 1. Annie is running 22 percent behind the 17-day take of the mentioned Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked.
The Imitation Game continued to impress in moderate release with a seventh place take of $7.77 million from 754 locations. That gave the awards season hopeful from The Weinstein Company a per-location average of $10,308 for the frame, which easily represented the weekend's strongest location average for films in the top ten. The Imitation Game has grossed $30.47 million to date and appears to be in great shape for a lengthy box office run, especially when considering it was down only 2 percent from last weekend without the aid of a major expansion this weekend.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 finished in eighth with $7.56 million. The third installment of Lionsgate's blockbuster franchise was down a very healthy 25 percent from last weekend. Mockingjay - Part 1 is currently the second highest grossing release of 2014 domestically with a 45-day take of $323.73 million. That leaves the film just $9.32 million away from the current $333.06 million total gross of Guardians of the Galaxy.
Warner's American Sniper and Paramount's Selma both continued to impress on the platform front with respective weekend takes of $676,909 and $633,173. Selma claimed a per-location average of $28,781 from 22 locations, while American Sniper generated a massive per-location average of $169,227 from 4 locations. Respective eleven-day totals for the awards season hopefuls stand at $2.23 million for American Sniper and at $2.07 million for Selma. Selma will be expanding into nationwide release this coming Friday, while American Sniper will receive a nationwide expansion on January 16.
By Alex Edghill
The Minions had to take a back seat this past week to Cinderella which led all upcoming films in Facebook like increases with 230.523. A new trailer debuted on December 31st which evidentially resonated with fans and with few other new trailer or media being released it dominated the week on Facebook.
The Minions settled for second on the week, the first time in almost a month that they were not at the top for weekly growth. What's more amazing is there really hasn't been much actual news about the film yet it keeps churning out 100k+ like weeks. This is pretty much unheard of, especially for a film with such a massive existing base already.
Upcoming franchise (and budding franchise) titles Fifty Shades Of Grey, Avengers: Age Of Ultron and Star Wars: The Force Awakens rounded out the top 5 with 76k, 74k and 60k new likes respectively. These three have also been doing very well in general since their trailers debuted, each seeing more than 2 million like increases since that time.
As for films opening in January, only Taken 3 managed to crack the top 10, coming in at 6th spot with 54k new likes. The Boy Next Door was next after that in 11th place with 21k new likes. At the other end of the scale, the smallest like increase of all films tracked came from Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 which actually lost 222 likes, followed by The Loft which had just 56 new likes.
Facebook Top 15 Movies by Like Increase for the Week Ending Sunday January 4th
|3||02/13/15||Fifty Shades of Grey||6,908,041||6,831,963||76,078||1.11%|
|4||05/01/15||Avengers: Age of Ultron||12,790,659||12,717,105||73,554||0.58%|
|5||12/18/15||Star Wars: The Force Awakens||13,274,050||13,214,157||59,893||0.45%|
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Fox is the new global box office champion after posting a record $5.5 billion in worldwide box office in 2014. Early reports indicate the studio's record breaking year comes on the heels of a strong overseas box office performance, which totalled $3.73 billion in ticket sales. Domestically, Fox earned a company best $1.79 billion from ticket sales.