Star Wars: The Force Awakens continues to dominate the holiday box office with its record-annihilating run. Christmas Day proved a huge gain as Star Wars raked in $49.3 million, marking the highest take ever. The J.J. Abrams-directed reboot smashed the record books- the second highest Christmas Day take was Sherlock Holmes back in 2009 which earned a paltry-by-comparison $26 million. Star Wars has currently earned $440 million domestically and $890 worldwide.
The question in mind now is how far can The Force Awakens go. With its unparalleled box office performance (not to mention brand name recognition), there’s not a whole lot of comps to base predictions on. A cultural phenomenon like this is difficulty to adequately gauge. Jurassic World was in a similar, over-performer this past summer as was Avatar, James Cameron’s quickly beloved science fiction film that opened over the holiday season back in 2009. The Force Awakens is currently out-performing both of those films. In eight days of release, the movie is already the eleventh highest grossing title at the domestic box office (unadjusted). A seize on Avatar‘s best-selling status (which sits at $760 million) certainly seems possible.
While The Force Awakens continues to lead the cinematic discussion, it’s worth noting that several other films are doing just fine in their own right. Christmas Day saw the release of a slew of new titles and Daddy’s Home, the latest comedy starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg (who previously collaborated on the 2010 comedy The Other Guys), lead the fresh crop with an estimated take of $15.7 million. That marks the sixth highest Christmas Day gross in history and a break for Paramount Pictures who also has The Big Short pulling in fine numbers (nearly $10 million to date) thanks to its critical reception and growing awards odds. David O. Russell’s Joy (starring Jennifer Lawarence) also opened fairly well with a $6 million take on Christmas Day and shows signs of life at the box office; a respite for Fox considering the films’ reviews and award chances have become a foggier. Other Christmas Day openers Concussion and Point Break opened at $4 million and may be suffering to hang on to this ultra-competitive season.
In limited release, the 70mm roadshow of Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight is bringing huge crowds however. The film earned nearly $2 million on Christmas Day, significant since the film is only playing on 100 screens across the country and the movie has a run time exceeding three hours long. The Revenant, the survival period drama starring Oscar hopeful Leonardo DiCaprio, opened on only four screens but pulled in a staggering $171,000 on Christmas Day- per-screen average is $42,000.
Movie houses are pulling them in and this next week should be booming. We’ll stay tuned to the latest developments.