I was going to open this week’s box office report by asking if anyone had heard of Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death, this week’s lone wide release, which grossed $15 million (no, it’s not a Tyler Perry movie). But a better question may be, has anyone heard of Woman in Black, the 2012 predecessor starring Daniel Radcliffe? That one grossed $127 million worldwide (after a $20 million opening), which is mind blowing to me. The new one does not have Daniel Radcliffe, but does seem to still be about a scary haunted house. Long story short, it’s definitely January.
The film didn’t screen for critics (at least, I certainly didn’t get an invite) on its way to a 26% RottenTomatoes rating and a C cinemascore from moviegoers, even with 65% of the audience being under 25. I hear audiences were throwing their diapers at the screen in disgust.
Elsewhere, The Hobbit: Blah Blah Blah It’s Finally Over led for the third weekend in a row, as A Most Violent Year opened strong in New York and LA with a solid $47,000 per screen average. Though that average wasn’t the strongest of the weekend. That honor went to American Sniper, earning $160,000 per theater in its second weekend of limited release, “which is the biggest second weekend average ever for a live-action movie (the previous record was $96,549 for Moulin Rouge).”
That film has already kicked off a back-and-forth political flame war over its Navy SEAL protagonist (he has a tendency to call Iraqis “savages”), and all before us non-New York or LA critics have even seen it. So, get excited for that.
Meanwhile, The Hobbit should “wrap up between $260-270 million” domestically, compared to $303 million for the first and $258 for the second. The first made 70% of its money overseas, 73% for the second. There will be no more Hobbit movies in the foreseeable future, but Warner Bros’ decision to split the story into three movies seems to have been rewarded, making close to a billion for each movie when all is said and done. Oy.
The January silly season begins in earnest next week with Taken 3, though we’ve still got a few weeks worth of awards season overlap, with A Most Violent Year, Inherent Vice, American Sniper, and Selma all expanding. The week after, it’s Blackhat, Paddington, and The Wedding Ringer, starring America’s Sweetheart, Josh Gad. Did you ever see the editorial Josh Gad wrote about how, on the one hand, Bill Cosby has tarnished his legacy, while on the other, Mike Nichols died with his legacy intact? It really makes you think. Specifically, it makes you think, “Wait, why does… USA Today have Josh Gad writing editorials?” I swear Josh Gad is the pop culture equivalent of that kid your mom forces you to play with.