BOX OFFICE: Hobbit Opens Weak, Tyler Perry Has Worst Madea Opening Ever

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug made like my sex life and underperformed over the weekend, earning $73.7 million in the US, down almost $11 million from the last Hobbit last year, and coming out “well below expectations.” It won’t mean much for fans, though, since Peter Jackson is already shooting the follow up. Hell, good luck getting the guy to stop making hobbit movies. Guy probably doodles hobbits on his bar napkins.

[The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug]’s audience was 60 percent male and 64 percent over 25 years of age. In comparison, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey was 57 percent male and 58 percent over 25. 3D showings accounted for 49 percent of the gross, which is identical to the first movie. That 3D figure is inclusive of IMAX, which brought in $9.2 million (12.5 percent). [Audiences] awarded the movie an “A-” CinemaScore, which is off from the first movie’s “A” score.

By comparison, 3D accounted for 80% of Gravity’s record gross earlier this year. If 3D isn’t dying, we’re at least to the point where studios will actually consider whether a film should be in 3D before shelling out to shoot or convert it, unlike a few years ago when 3D was the automatic standard for anything action or sci-fi. Hooray for sanity!

Speaking of… A Madea Christmas, which teamed up Tyler Perry with perhaps his nearest white counterpart, Larry the Cable Guy (aka the white-face alter ego of Dan Whitney who took over his entire persona at some point), became the lowest-opening Madea movie ever and the third-lowest-opening Tyler Perry movie over the weekend.

At 2,194 locations, Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas opened to an estimated $16 million. That’s the third-lowest start yet for a Perry movie, and it’s the lowest ever for one that features Madea. In comparison, Madea’s Witness Protection opened to $25.4 million last June. It is important to remember, though, that December releases have smaller openings followed by above-average holds, and A Madea Christmas should still be able to make it past $50 million.

The movie’s audience was 67 percent female and 63 percent over the age of 25. They gave it an “A-” CinemaScore, which is a fairly typical score for a Perry movie. [BoxOfficeMojo]

Lowest grossing or not, that’s still $16 million for a movie with no stars that Tyler Perry probably wrote during a flight on his private jet and shot over a three-day weekend. By comparison, The Internship, starring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson, cost almost $60 million to make, blanketed the country in ads for weeks, and only grossed $17.3 million in its opening weekend, barely a million more than Tyler Perry’s microbudget romp opening during peak season that didn’t screen for press and snuck into theaters with all the fanfare of a hobo taking a dump behind the 7/11. I’d say he’s still doing all right.

Elsewhere, American Hustle opened in six locations and earned $115,000 per theater, good enough for 15th of all time. It just goes to show, Jennifer Lawrence + Christian Bale’s Combover + Bradley Cooper’s Curls + Amy Adams Cleavage = Magic. I very much want to go to there. Who wouldn’t?

[via BoxOfficeMojo]