January is a month where the number 1 spot is like a revolving door, and that still holds true, but this week's box office does not feature either of the two new releases in the top spot.
Instead, it's Kathryn Bigelow's critically acclaimed Zero Dark Thirty (read our review) that comes in at number 1 with $24 million. For the past few weeks, the film had been biding its time in limited release - posting massive per-screen averages in the process - and now that it has gone wide we can plainly see just how highly anticipated this Oscar and Golden Globe contender was.
For Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty also marks her biggest opening weekend (in terms of a film going wide), likely a byproduct of her success with the 2009 film The Hurt Locker. Including the revenue earned in limited release, Zero Dark Thirty is now up to $29 million in domestic grosses.
At number 2 is the comedy A Haunted House (read our review) with $18 million. Spoofing a wide variety of films in the found footage sub-genre, as well as broader specter-based comedies, A Haunted House could have been a spiritual successor to Scary Movie, but it ultimately fell flat, at least with critics.
Audiences, however, were interested enough to help the film secure a decent opening for an R-rated comedy in January. And when a movie like this boasts a production budget of $2.5 million, any domestic revenue earned is literally money in the bank.
Right behind A Haunted House is the other new release of the weekend, Gangster Squad, with $16 million. Boasting everything from fedoras to shootouts to Ryan Gosling, the film had a lot going for it, but apparently that wasn't enough.
Warner Bros. willingness to delay the film into January - in order to replace a scene that bared an eerie resemblance to the events in Aurora late last year - suggested the studio didn't have high hopes for the film, and a third place opening hints audiences didn't either. For a film with a lot of star power behind it, we certainly expected a bigger opening.
Coming in at number 4 is Django Unchained with $11 million, which puts its domestic total at $125 million. More importantly that tally makes this Quentin Tarantino's highest grossing movie yet, eclipsing the previous title-holder Inglourious Basterds.
Rounding out the top 5 is the musical Les Misérables with $10 million. The film is now up $119 million in domestic revenue and ranks number 5 all time for musicals in the box office behind Enchanted (which isn't necessarily a musical), Mamma Mia!, Chicago, and Grease.
Peter Jackson's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is the number 6 film this weekend with $9 million. With a domestic total of $278 million thus far, this first film in a forthcoming trilogy is now in the top 50 for both domestic and worldwide grosses all time.
At number 7 is Lincoln with $6.3 million, which brings its domestic total up to $152 million. Fun fact: Lincoln is the third highest grossing film that features a President as a main character, behind only Air Force One ($172 million) and Independence Day ($306 million). So by that barometer, one could say that Lincoln is the highest grossing film featuring a real life President.
Right behind Lincoln is the family comedy Parental Guidance with $6.1 million, which helps the film just barely cross the $60 million mark and proves that Billy Crystal and Bette Midler can still generate some box office.
Falling all the way from number 1 to number 9 this weekend is Texas Chainsaw 3D with $5.1 million. The good news is that the film's $30 million domestic total thus far puts it slightly above the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre (released way back in 1974), but the bad news is it'll likely be off the top 10 next weekend.
And Silver Linings Playbook comes in at number 10 with an even $5 million. David O'Russell's surprisingly funny portrait of mental illness still has yet to officially go wide (if it ever will), but has amassed $41 million regardless.
Source: Box Office Mojo