The Force was strong with a certain galaxy far, far away at the box office this week, leaving a collection of holdovers and newcomers in the dust.
Coming in first place this weekend is of course Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (read our review). The spinoff grossed an impressive $155 million in its first three days, which surpassed the high end of expectations going into its release. Rogue One scored the third-highest debut of 2016 (behind only the dynamic duo of Captain America: Civil War and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice), the second-largest opening weekend of December, and the second best start in the history of the Star Wars franchise (behind only last year's The Force Awakens). Though there is obviously a large discrepancy between Episode VII and Rogue One, it's because of the special circumstances surrounding Force Awakens. This is a great opening for the first Star Wars anthology and shows Disney their plan to annualize the franchise is a viable one.
The question now is just how high Rogue One can go for its entire run. Given that the reaction from fans and critics was mostly positive, the film will undoubtedly hold well over the next few weeks, even as some more genre pictures enter the fray over Christmas. With both Passengers (which has earned poor reviews early on) and Assassin's Creed debuting this week, it will be interesting to see what Rogue One's second weekend numbers are, but it opened so high that even if it suffered a massive drop-off (which is unlikely based on the response), it could still make enough to top its "competition." Rogue One may not have the multiplex to itself entirely, but it's still the alpha dog in theaters.
Coming in second is Moana with $11.6 million. The latest from Disney Animation is now up to $161.8 million domestically.
Office Christmas Party is the #3 film. The R-rated comedy brought in $8.4 million in its second weekend to raise its Stateside total to $31.5 million.
In fourth is the new drama Collateral Beauty, which managed only $7 million in its first three days. The film had rough sledding due to opening directly against Rogue One, and being widely panned by critics certainly didn't help its prospects. Despite the A-list ensemble that included Will Smith, audiences weren't interested in the project, and it's unlikely it will stay in theaters for much longer. Since there are four wide releases coming this week, there will be minimal demand for Collateral Beauty.
Rounding out the top five is Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them with $5 million. The fantasy adventure has now made $207.6 million domestically.
Also expanding this week was La La Land (read our review), and the acclaimed musical finished seventh, grossing $4 million from 200 theaters - continuing its impressive performance as a platform release. The Oscar frontrunner is now up to $5.2 million domestically, and with an even larger expansion planned for Christmas Day, those numbers should only go up as more people get an opportunity to check it out.
In eighth is Arrival with $2.7 million. The sci-fi drama is now up to $86.4 million Stateside.
Coming in ninth is Doctor Strange, which grossed $2 million in its seventh weekend. The 14th installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe raised its domestic total to $226 million.
Capping off the top ten is Nocturnal Animals. The drama made $1.3 million over the weekend and is now up to $8.8 million in the U.S.
[NOTE: These are only weekend box office estimates -- based on Friday and Saturday ticket sales coupled with adjusted expectations for Sunday. Official weekend box office results will be released on Monday, December 19 -- at which time we'll update this post with any changes.]
Source: Box Office Mojo
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