Box Office

Box Office Prognosis: Taken 3 Takes The Box Office From Bilbo Baggins

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It’s been six years since the first Taken film came out (yeah, I know — crazy huh?), and at that time I would have never predicted that Liam Neeson would become one of the biggest action stars of the day.  But the surprise success of Taken launched the guy’s career into a completely new direction, and since then he’s been a dependable man to launch your action films with.  So in that case, the huge success of Taken 3 shouldn’t be THAT big a surprise.

Still though, even I didn’t predict this big an opening sum.  Taken 3 brought in a massive $40.4 million over the three day frame, which was the second highest opening ever for January (only behind the $41 million opening of last year’s Ride Along).  It’s still an 18% drop over Taken 2’s release back in October 2012, but still — it’s a pretty impressive sum, especially considering how pretty much every estimate (including my own) had the film opening in the low 30’s AT MINIMUM.  Don’t expect a strong hold in the coming weeks (the reviews have been TERRIBLE), but a $100 million total is still likely at the end of the day.

At a very distant number two was Selma, the MLK biopic that opened in wide release on January 9.  The three day frame was $11.2 million which, unfortunately, isn’t that high a take.  Still though, reviews are outstanding, award talk is high, and audience word of mouth is very positive (A+).  It’s an excellent film, so hopefully good buzz will propel it to some level of high success.  The budget is only $20 million, so the bar isn’t super high.  And you have to believe that next week’s Martin Luther King weekend will drive audiences to theaters…right?  I hope so.

Selma-Expanding

Maintaining its decent hold in third place (in its third weekend of release no less) was Into the Woods, which eased 48 percent to a total of $9.75 million.  That’s a total of $105 million, which already marks another big success for the Mouse House. At the rate its going, a close of around $130 million should be in the cards.  Not bad for a Sondheim musical, that’s for sure.

In fourth place was of course The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies, which dropped three places since last week in its biggest percentage yet, a whopping 57%.  The $9.44 million made in this frame will bring up the film’s total to $236 million, the lowest yet for the series.  There’s a chance the status will remain that way if it doesn’t make another $20 million before it leaves theaters, but we’ll just have to wait and see on that one.  Finally, Unbroken eased down two places with a three day take of $8.4 million.  It too has passed $100 million, and will likely make it to $120 million.

Unbroken-2

Here’s the chart:

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Check back next week, where a Blackhat Hacker Named Hathaway, Bradley Cooper and a robot baby, and Kevin Hart will do battle.  Sparks will fly, next week!

-Matthew