January is usually a month where films make modest returns. But occasionally, you get a movie that exceeds such lukewarm expectations and goes above and beyond when it comes to putting asses in seats. American Sniper is one such film, as the Clint Eastwood directed movie set a new January record with an opening take of over $90 million.
Sitting just behind The Matrix Reloaded ($91.8 million), American Sniper made solid use of the North American public holiday weekend to score big, without having to resort to the use of 3D to move tickets. It’s a massive win, and when compared to recent Lone Survivor’s opening weekend ($37.8 million), it’s even more impressive overall.
Moving on, things were looking rosy for Kevin Hart yet again. Making more than $21 million in second place, The Wedding Ringer is the fourth film to star Hart that opened above the $20 million mark. It’s not on par exactly with any of his previous films however, but he should be looking at close to a $30 million opening in March when he pops again with Will Ferrell in Get Hard, proving his reliability as a bankable star in Hollywood. As for Michael Mann’s Blackhat, it opened to a poor $4 million debut, raking in the dubious dishonour of the worst opening ever for a movie playing in 2500 screens or more. Here’s a look at the weekend estimates from the North American box office:
- American Sniper – $90.2 Million
- The Wedding Ringer – $21 Million
- Paddington – $19.2 Million
- Taken 3 – $14 Million
- Selma – $8.3 Million
- The Imitation Game – $7.1 Million
- Into The Woods – $6.5 Million
- The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies – $4.8 Million
- Unbroken – $4.2 Million
- Blackhat – $4 Million
Top ten departures this week include Annie, Night At The Museum 3 and The Woman in Black 2. The third Night At The Museum film didn’t exactly match up to the previous two films. It’s well behind the current totals of the first film ($574 million) and the second ($413 million), with a total haul of only $283 million so far.
Last Updated: January 19, 2015