Box Office: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire & Frozen Dominate, Break Thanksgiving Weekend Records In The Process

They say bad things happen in threes. When looking at how well The Hunger Games: Catching Fire has been performing, you can say good things happen in fours. With its monster opening last week, where it has the fourth-best opening of all time, Catching Fire continued its earning ways over the weekend with estimated earnings of $74.5 million. Factor in the entire five-day Thanksgiving weekend and that total jumps to $110.1 million. That figure totally obliterates the $82.4 million record set by Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

After two weeks, Catching Fire has collected nearly $300 million at the domestic office with a worldwide total of $573 million. By comparison, the first Hunger Games made $384.3 million worldwide during its entire theatrical run. Speaking of good things happening in fours, Catching Fire‘s second weekend totals rank it fourth all time behind The Avengers, Avatar and The Dark Knight. At this pace, we could see the sequel topple another sequel (Despicable Me 2) to become the second-biggest domestic hit of 2013 – Iron Man 3 currently rules the cinematic box office roost of 2013 with $409 million.

Coming in at a very respectable second was Disney’s animated Frozen with $66.7 million. Its five-day total for Thanksgiving was $93.4 million, which shattered Toy Story 2‘s record by more than $12 million. Continuing the third wave of Disney Princess movies following the likes of Tangled and Brave, Frozen proved to be outsell them all. With favorable reviews from critics and a strong CinemaScore, this one has the benefit of opening this holiday season as the must-see family film. For parents with kids that aren’t quite YA-lit ready to watch something where kids battle to the death, Frozen is your best bet. And fans of Glee are sure to enjoy the vocal stylings of both Idina Menzel and Jonathan Groff.

Taking bronze was Thor: The Dark World ($11.1 million), which once again got the better of The Best Man Holiday ($8.5 million). The combination of Jason Statham and James Franco wasn’t enough to get audiences to see Homefront. This backwaters Breaking Bad meets WITSEC wannabe placed fifth with an underwhelming $7 million.

Vince Vaughn’s stock continues to drop as a leading man with Delivery Man. Though, the film did have the least PTA percentage drop of any other film in the top 10. But it had a less than impressive debut opening against Catching Fire last weekend. Expanding from 70 to 1,234 theaters, The Book Thief made its way into the top 10 finishing with $4.9 million.

The big screen adaptation of Langston Hughes’ play Black Nativity failed to capture much of an audience over Thanksgiving as it opened in eighth place with $3.9 million. The Christmas-themed release that looked to target Christian and African American audiences lost to the likes of The Best Man Holiday. And it’ll likely get lost again in the weeks to come with the arrival of Tyler Perry’s Madea Christmas movie.

Oscar hopefuls Philomena, which expanded from 4 to 835 theaters, made it onto the leader with $3.8 million, while Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave raked in another $3 million to bring its total to a little more than $33 million.

You may have noticed that there was no mention of Spike Lee’s Oldboy. That’s because it placed 17th overall at the box office. Opening in 583 theaters, the film only made $850k over the weekend. The two extra days for the Thanksgiving holiday boosts that figure to $1.25 million. With a reported budget of $30 million and FilmDistrict only having a few critics screenings, it’s pretty much a guarantee that the film won’t go wide and it will be remembered as one of Spike Lee’s worse-performing films of all time.


Weekend Box Office for November 29 – December 1, 2013

1. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (Lionsgate) – $74,500,000 ($296,500,000)

2. Frozen (Buena Vista) – $66,713,000 ($93,013,000)

3. Thor: The Dark World (Buena Vista) – $15,493,000 ($186,712,000)

4. The Best Man Holiday (Universal) – $8,491,000 ($63,414,000)

5. Homefront (Open Road Films) – $6,970,000 ($9,795,000)

6. Delivery Man (Buena Vista) – $6,931,000 ($19,453,000)

7. The Book Thief (Fox) – $4,850,000 ($7,856,000)

8. Black Nativity (Fox Searchlight) – $3,880,000

9. Philomena (The Weinstein Company) – $3,789,000 ($4,754,000)

10. 12 Years a Slave (Fox Searchlight) – $3,025,000 ($33,134,000)

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