War movie Lone Survivor outdid itself with the second biggest wide opening ever for the month of January. I specifically said wide opening because Lone Survivor actually came out in very limited release on December 25th last year.
So three weekends into 2014 and 2013 still hasn’t let go of the top spot. Leaving that bit of info behind, let’s see what Lone Survivor has. $37.8 million was the weekend take, that’s just $2.2 million shy of the January opening record still held by 2008’s Cloverfield. Unlike that one Lone Survivor is expected to perform much better over the long run after grabbing a rare A+ Cinemascore. The positive word of mouth should push Lone Survivor past $120 million domestically. Considering the subject matter, a failed US military operation in the Middle East, that’s very impressive. Not even box office bad luck charm Taylor Kitsch (John Carter, Battleship) couldn’t keep this one from turning into a hit.
After making $14.7 million over the weekend for second place, Frozen is now the biggest single run animated box office grosser of all time made by Disney’s own in-house animation department. What that means is Disney have never had an animation by them (so not including Pixar) made this much money in a single box office run. The Lion King used to hold this title with $312.8 million. After subsequent releases (two more, one being in 3D) the beloved classic has now reached $422.7 million domestically. Meanwhile Frozen is up to $317.3 million after almost two months in release. How much higher can the animation get you ask? Well I used to think $350 million would be the ceiling here but now I’m beginning to doubt that thought. To become the third highest grossing movie of 2013 (and the number one animation of 2013) Frozen would have to beat Despicable Me 2 and its $368 million domestic take. Elsa would need an incredible magic trick to pull that one off. Even if it doesn’t, $360 million would be one for the record books too. Now granted, I am not adjusting for inflation on the older Disney titles and I promise you will see very soon a post that deals exactly with that very subject.
The only new wide release of the weekend is The Legend of Hercules and it came in third. Now there’s nothing legendary about an $8.8 million wide debut but after looking at one of the trailers for this thing, man, wow, phenomenal box office numbers. That’s some direct-to-video The Asylum stuff. How in the world did it cost $70 million, that’s money laundering right there, no other explanation. Like I wonder who paid the full price of a movie ticket, plus the 3D premium for that, to watch that.
The Wolf of Wall Street was a very close 4th with 8.8 million for a new domestic cume of 78.4 million. American Hustle rounds out the top 5 with $8.3 million which makes it the 33rd 2013 movie to pass the $100 million mark.