Is Jessica Chastain a movie star? Probably not. At least not yet. However, this weekend proved that she's well on her way to being one. Headlining the top two films at the box office in a single weekend is a great start. The Oscar nomination certainly doesn't hurt either.
Well, now we know why the box office was so incredibly light last week: everyone was waiting to see things this week! Although 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' clung to the top spot for the third week in a row, it was a very tight race, with only $4 million separating the top three films.
As expected, the fifth and final film of the 'Twilight' series opened huge. In fact, 'The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2' had the second biggest opening of the franchise and when you consider how huge these things tend to open, that's a big accomplishment. However, this was not just a victorious weekend for Twi-hards -- just about every film in the top ten had something to cheer about.
'Taken' was the surprise hit of 2009, a January dump that inexplicably made nearly $150 million in the United States and transformed Liam Neeson into an instant action star. Three years later, 'Taken 2' has arrived in theaters on a primo release date and with an advertising campaign that probably cost more than the entire first movie. Well, it looks like the hype was worth it. The first film may have been a sleeper, but the second adventure of Liam Neeson's kidnap-prone family has opened like a true blockbuster.
It's expected that box office numbers go up on Sunday afternoon. By that point, the estimates tend to be pretty accurate and if there is a difference come Monday morning, it's negligible. Not so today. Three new releases are nearly deadlocked as I write this and we won't know until sometime tomorrow who will actually be one top. We shall update accordingly. Anyway, here's where we stand right now.
How do you define a hit? What's more important: total gross or actual audience enthusiasm? The answer to this question will help us decide who actually won the weekend. Call it the "Battle of the Paul Andersons": Paul WS Anderson's 'Resident Evil: Retribution' and Paul Thomas Anderson's 'The Master' both opened this week and both had completely different results, but they beg to be compared to each other.
This was a rough week at the box office, guys, If we had an decency whatsoever, we'd call it a day and simply not report just how poorly every movie did these past three days, but alas: the world must keep spinning. Summer is over, the Fall is upon us and we've entered the weakest part of the year for both new releases and box office grosses. Let's just get this over with, shall we?
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