The new year, the first weekend, and all that we get is a low budget horror flick for a new release. That is unfortunately how the year has usually opened for quite a while now in Hollywood. The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death was the sole release in North America this time, a sequel to the hit horror film of 2012. The original one had Daniel Radcliffe in his first post Harry Potter role and so the buzz was quite strong. This sequel however doesn’t have any big names attached to it. It still somehow managed a decent $15.1 million domestic opening, though much behind the $20.9 million that the original flick had opened with. This opening is also lower than last year’s January horror movie Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones ($18.3 million). The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death would most probably end with somewhere less than $30 million in North America from its entire theatrical run. The UK market would be another key one for this movie, where the original had done extremely well; though again, no Radcliffe to get the Britishers truly excited! The production budget for the movie is not known, though it should be lower than the $15 million of the 2012 film. The movie is thus most likely to be termed successful by the time it is done with its stay in the theatres, though it won’t be on the scale of the original. But a third movie of the franchise is by no means a guarantee now.
It wasn’t the new movie which had the audience captivated on the first weekend of January, but the holdovers. The ones from December that continue to woo the crowd. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies led the gang and it remained on top of the domestic box-office charts for three weekends in a row, which ain’t a mere feat at all! It has earned $723 million worldwide already, of which about $500 million comes from the foreign markets alone. The two releases of last week, Unbroken and Into the Woods, are doing quite well on the domestic front so far. Both have earned close to $90 million in North America but are yet to open in most of the foreign territories. I would expect both these movies to be financially successful by the time they leave the theatres, but they do need a good showing internationally and so nothing can be called a foregone conclusion here. Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb has somehow survived a bad opening to register quite low drops in its subsequent weekends such that it may well achieve $100 million box-office collections domestically which seemed highly difficult on the opening weekend. And before we wrap up, I was checking on the other contenders for the $700 million club of 2014 (can read the list here) apart from the final The Hobbit film. It seems that The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1 is only less than $5 million away from joining the club. Interstellar is about $47 million off that mark, and we’ll check on its status next week.
First weekend out of the way, now let’s get back to our business!
Here are the top 5 weekend earners at the US box-office (estimates):
1. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies ($21.9 million; third weekend)
2. Into the Woods ($19.1 million; second weekend)
3. Unbroken ($18.4 million; second weekend)
4. The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death ($15.1 million)
5. Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb ($14.5 million; third weekend)