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Weekend Box Office: Twilight and Skyfall Lead the Way to Record Thanksgiving Returns

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By Chris Kavan - 11/25/12 at 07:44 PM CT

After a strong opening last week, it was once again The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 2, along with fellow holdover Skyfall, that helped the box officer earn a record $206.7 million over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, easily topping the $175.2 million previous record set back in 2009.


Through the five day holiday period, the Twilight finale brought in another $64.02 million. It's weekend total of $43.07 million represents the best second weekend total for any film in the Twilight series. All in all, the film has brought in $227 million over 10 days and is not tracking just $4 million behind New Moon. Considering the lack of new releases in the next couple of weeks anyway, it should wind up close to the $300 million total and I wouldn't be at all surprised if it ultimately winds up the highest-grossing film in the series.


The latest Bond film showed little signs of slowing down, dropping just 12.4% in its third weekend out. Adding an additional $51.1 million over the five-day holiday weekend. That raises its overall total to $221.7 million - and anything more will just keep adding to its #1 franchise rating. It will most likely wind up around the $275 million mark when it ends its run.


It may not have opened in #1, but Lincoln managed to be the only film already in wide release to increase its overall grosses, up an impressive 18.9% with $25.02 million ($34.1 million for the total holiday period). The historical drama has made $62.2 million and it's looking more and more like a $100 million total should be within reach.


Although Rise of the Guardians was the top-grossing film out of all the new releases this week, the $32.6 million total after five days is much lower than comparable films The Muppets ($41.5 million) and Tangled ($68.7 million). In fact, the lowest opening for any DreamWorks Animation title since Flushed Away opened to $18.8 million (over three days) in 2006. The total doesn't bode well for a film that cost $145 million to make (not including marketing). Hopefully foreign markets will help ease the burden a bit. This time around 3D wasn't much help, accounting for just 35% of the box office total.


On the other end of the 3D spectrum, Life of Pi enjoyed a healthy 68% 3D box office total. The visually-impressive Ang Lee film took in $22 million ($30.15 over the entire holiday). The mostly male (52%) and older (60% over 25) awarded the film a solid A-. For a movie that seems to have a somewhat limited appeal - that opening is strong and it should play well over the next few weekends.

Outside the top five - Red Dawn opened in seventh place with $14.6 million ($22 million for the holiday) and while that may seem low, remember this movie sat on the shelf for three years. Chances are the B Cinemascore means the film will fade relatively quickly, but things could have been much worse.

The Silver Linings Playbook wound up in 9th place with $4.62 million in 367 theaters. Although that is a solid number, the healthy competition from the top box office draws ultimately meant the film underperformed. As it rolls out in more theaters nation-wide, it will be interesting to see if it can sustain the great critical reaction it has received or if it will simply fade into the background. I wish it luck - it's not often a romantic comedy/drama type film can impress me, but this one actually did the trick.

Next week doesn't look to provide much in the way of threats to any of the top films. You have the crime thriller Killing Them Softly, which, despite the presence of Brad Pitt, I have heard very little about. Without much marketing, I have a feeling this will only open to middling numbers. You also have the horror film The Collection (sequel to the 2009 film, The Collector) and given it's being released at the end of November, I'm guessing only fans of the original are going to show up. I have a feeling next week's box office is going to look a lot like this week's box office.


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