“The Hobbit” three-peats as box office champ nears $700 million worldwide

Warner Bros. Pictures
Warner Bros. Pictures

1. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – $22 million [3rd week; $220 million in total] The final saga of “The Hobbit” trilogy has held up well in a jam-packed Christmas/New Year’s holiday season holding back numerous challengers to retain its box office crown for a third consecutive week. “Armies” now seems poised to catch the $258 million total gross of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” even if the first chapter, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’s” total of $303 million seems far out of reach. It looks like it may take Liam Neeson’s “Taken 3” to finally drop Bilbo and company down a spot or two next week, but with its continued excellent hold, it could be a closer than expected contest.

2. Into the Woods – $19 million [2nd week; $91.1 million] The Disney adaptation of the Broadway play continues to be a strong performer as well and managed to beat out “Unbroken” for the No. 2 slot after settling for the third slot last week. Look for this to catch “Hairspray’s” $118 million gross to earn the sixth spot on the all-time musical list. Certainly a happily ever after the suits at Disney can be proud of for a late Christmas treat.

Film Title: Unbroken3. Unbroken – $19 million [2nd week; $87.8 million] The Oscar hopeful is finding a very positive response from audiences, which will certainly aid the case of Angelina Jolie’s World War II drama. It’s already made back its $65 million budget and could reach as high as $125 million before it ends its run, especially if the film gets a shot in the arm from an Oscar nomination.

4. The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death – $16.5 million [debut week] Despite a strong Friday showing where it finished just behind “Armies,” the horror film settled in to fourth place. Its 2012 predecessor opened to $20.8 million, but benefited from the star power of “Harry Potter’s” Daniel Radcliffe in the lead role while this stars relative unknowns so this is actually a fairly impressive showing.

Robin Williams Ben Stiller Night at the Museum 35. Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb – $15 million [4th week; $89 million] As it nears $100 million, it’s incredible that this third installment will easily be considered a disappointment despite a gross that would make a lot of franchises happy. The previous films fared no worse than $177 million and this one may struggle to get to $125 million.

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