Monday, January 12, 2015

'Taken 3' Exceeds Expectations, Becomes Second-Highest January Opening

Taken 3
The powers of Liam Neeson, Action Hero appear to be limitless--Taken 3, the final movie in the Taken series (until they reboot it, possibly with Jai Courtney--you know it's happening), was predicted to earn $30 million on its opening weekend, but it took (ha ha) $40.4 million instead, which is really good for A) a movie coming out in January, notoriously the doldrums of the movie year, and B) a  movie with a Rotten Tomatoes score of 12%. Taken 3 has now supplanted Cloverfield for the highest-ever January opening, behind last year's Ride Along.

It looks like Taken 3 used up all of Selma's box office mojo, at least for now--an expansion to wide release netted the civil rights drama only $11.2 million, putting it in a distant second place. With its positive buzz and awards season working its way up to an Oscar frenzy, though, Selma should have pretty good legs in the coming weeks. It already won one Golden Globe last night (Best Original Song) and is expected to clean up when Oscar nominations are announced on Thursday.

Rounding out the top five were holdovers Into the Woods (weekend gross: $9.7 million; total gross: $105.2 million), last week's (and the week before that, and the week before that) number one The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (weekend gross: $9.4 million; total gross: $236.5 million) and Unbroken (weekend gross: $8.3 million; total gross: $101.6 million).

Inherent Vice
The Imitation Game and Inherent Vice both added several hundred theatres, with the former (weekend gross: $7.6 million; total gross: $40.8  million) hanging on in the top ten and the latter pulling in a lackluster $2.9  million (total gross: $4.4 million). American Sniper continues to be the king of the per theatre average, earning $555,000 on just four screens; it should do well when it expands to wide release next weekend.

In terms of limited releases, the only one to make waves was Dominik Graf's period piece Beloved Sisters, which earned $25,000 on nine screens.

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