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AVATAR Rings In The New Year At The Box Office | cinema, verytasty.
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AVATAR Rings In The New Year At The Box Office

by Roy January 4, 2010 at 8:55 pm Comments

Avatar_worthingtontank

Well, Avatar certainly doesn’t show any signs of slowing down at the box office, racking up another 1st place finish with $68.5 million for the highest grossing New Year’s weekend ever.

That mark eclipsed not only¬†Meet the Fockers‘ previous record of $41.7 million, but earned the title of highest grossing third weekend ever, ahead of Spider-Man’s $45 million. James Cameron’s latest dipped only 9.4%, hitting the $350 million mark in only 17 days, second only to last summer’s The Dark Knight. In three weekends, Avatar has already become the second highest grossing film released in 2009 (behind only Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, which it will soon pass) and moved up to 15th on the all-time list. That’s insane. And overseas, things were even better: a $133 million international take put its foreign total up to $666.7 million. Combined with its domestic numbers, Avatar’s worldwide total in 3 weeks is $1.02 billion, making it the 4th highest-grossing picture of all time and mere days away from overtaking both Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (both final installments in huge trilogies, by the way) for 2nd place behind only (hey, how about that) Cameron’s last film, Titanic. And this is after less than a month in theaters! Sure, inflated IMAX/3D prices play a part, and the pace will probably slow now that the holidays are winding down, but come on! It sure makes all that ink we spilled about whether Avatar would be able to recoup its budget or not seem silly.

Anyway, things were pretty shiny behind Avatar too. Sherlock Holmes and the dreaded Squeakquel both posted strong holdover numbers, coming in 2nd and 3rd with $36.7 million and $35.2 million, respectively. It’s Complicated dipped the least among last weekend’s wide openers, falling only 14.9% to maintain 4th place with $18.8 million. The Blind Side kept up its impressive showing as well, rounding out the top 5 with $11.9 million, which put it past the $200 million mark.

The White Ribbon had a solid limited release debut, pulling in $61,300 across 3 venues, or a $20,433 per-theater average.

My first set of 2010 predictions (which I actually made last week) has next weekend’s wide releases of Leap Year, Daybreakers, and Youth in Revolt finishing in that order. We’ll find out next weekend if my instincts have gotten any better than last year.

Check out the top 12 below, or head on over to Box Office Mojo for the full weekend chart:

New releases highlighted in yellow

TW LW Title (click to view) Studio Weekend Gross % Change Theater Count / Change Average Total Gross Budget* Week #
1 1 Avatar Fox $68,490,688 -9.4% 3,461 +5 $19,789 $352,114,898 - 3
2 2 Sherlock Holmes WB $36,685,000 -41.2% 3,626 - $10,117 $138,975,000 - 2
3 3 Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel Fox $35,189,653 -28.0% 3,747 +47 $9,391 $155,916,935 - 2
4 4 It’s Complicated Uni. $18,802,965 -14.9% 2,897 +10 $6,490 $59,178,840 - 2
5 5 The Blind Side WB $11,855,000 +3.4% 2,926 +160 $4,052 $208,258,000 $29 7
6 6 Up in the Air Par. $10,720,052 -4.9% 1,895 - $5,657 $44,374,918 $25 5
7 7 The Princess and the Frog BV $9,824,311 +9.1% 3,328 -147 $2,952 $85,859,339 $105 6
8 9 Did You Hear About the Morgans? Sony $4,932,338 -1.4% 2,718 - $1,815 $25,312,384 $58 3
9 8 Nine Wein. $3,901,203 -28.5% 1,412 - $2,763 $13,745,956 $80 3
10 10 Invictus WB $3,890,000 -3.8% 2,170 +10 $1,793 $30,515,000 $60 4
11 11 The Twilight Saga: New Moon Sum. $3,442,263 +13.1% 1,627 +34 $2,116 $287,900,655 $50 7
12 12 3 Idiots Relbig. $1,494,542 -9.2% 132 +13 $11,322 $4,757,078 - 2
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