New Year's Weekend Receipts: 2011 Ends with a Box Office Boost

It was a buoyant holiday frame for the last releases of 2011, with audiences turning out in droves (and likely family-loaded minivans) to boost just about every film in theaters. Biggest congrats are in order for Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, which is indeed set to make in 17 days what Mission: Impossible III made in its entire theatrical run. And, look! A bunch more people caught the timely holiday spirit and bought a Zoo this week, along with a War Horse and, uh, Garry Marshall's New Year's Eve. Enjoy it while it lasts, Garry. Auld lang syne, 2011. Your holiday weekend receipts after the jump!

1. Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol
Gross: $31,250,000 ($134,139,000 )
Screens: 3,455 (PSA $9,045)
Weeks: 3 (Change: +5.9%)

Tom Cruise's latest spy outing dominates yet again. Pop the champagne and commence the couch-jumping! (I know, I know. That joke is so 2005.)

2. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Gross: $22,095,000 ($132,100,000)
Screens: 3,703 (PSA $5,967)
Weeks: 3 (Change: +9.1%)

Sherlock 2 may not have the flashy buzz that MI:4 has enjoyed, and it's trailed behind Ghotocol all these weeks, but consider: its domestic tally is only $2 million behind that of the box office champ. Pat on the back, good sirs!

3. Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked
Gross: $18,250,000 ($94,609,000)
Screens: 3,724 (PSA $4,901)
Weeks: 3 (Change: +45%)

Chipwrecked is on track to cross $100 million this week. Look at what you've done, America.

4. War Horse
Gross: $16,940,000 ($42,969,000)
Screens: 2,547 (PSA $6,651)
Weeks: 2 (Change: +125.4%)

At least one of Spielberg's two new jams is picking up speed, and how: War Horse's whopping increase, up 125.4 percent from last week, only solidifies those designs on the Oscars. And what a no brainer, anyway -- what movie screams "Take the aunts and uncles and cousins and gramps to the movies since you're still stuck at home after Christmas" like a movie that combines Spielbergian sentiment, old-timey war, and a horse?

5. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Gross: $16,300,000 ($57,100,000)
Screens: 2,914 (PSA: $5,594)
Weeks: 2 (Change: +27.8%)

...unless Fincher + goth punk intrigue + the Yeah Yeah Yeahs + a little rape 'n' revenge in the icy climes of Sweden is more your family's style. In which case, can I come visit next Christmas?

6. We Bought a Zoo
Gross: $14,300,000 ($41,787,000)
Screens: 3,163 (PSA: $4,521)
Weeks: 2 (Change: +52.8)

Great! The new Cameron Crowe caught on better this week, probably thanks to those billboards featuring gift-wrapped exotic animals. Just another irresponsible message for audiences to eat up to add to the pile.

7. The Adventures of Tintin
Gross: $12,000,000 ($47,841,000)
Screens: 3,087 (PSA: $3,887)
Weeks: 2 (Change: +23.6%)

One out of two ain't bad, I suppose... especially when the foreign box office is carrying the Belgian boy detective adventure to the tune of $239 million and counting.

8. New Year's Eve
Gross: $6,741,000 ($46,372,000)
Screens: 2,225 (PSA: $3,030)
Weeks: 4 (Change: +103.7%)

Of course there were people who went to the multiplex this week, skimmed past the War Horses and Girls with the Dragon Tattoos, and the Mission: Impossibles, and thought "Y'know what? LET'S GO SEE THAT ONE ABOUT NEW YEAR'S EVE!" Of course. Just die already, movie.

9. The Darkest Hour
Gross: $4,300,000 ($13,200,000)
Screens: 2,327 (PSA: $1,848)
Weeks: 2 (Change: +43.3%)

Summit farted a new action-packed adventure into theaters this Christmas with nary a peep of marketing, so we can assume anyone who went to see The Darkest Hour -- a movie about killer aliens who look like lightbulbs or light or something -- were just playing movie roulette when they bought their tickets. It'll be out of the top 10 by next week, and out of our collective consciousness even sooner. I guess when you have all that Twilight money you can create your own pre-dumping ground frame before the January dumping grounds even begin?

10. The Descendants
Gross: $3,650,000 ($39,675,000)
Screens: 758 (PSA: $4,815)
Weeks: 7 (Change: +76%)

Good on the Alexander Payne drama that, in its seventh week, it managed to sneak into the top 10 with a totally decent per-screen average on less than 800 screens to boot. Let's see if The Descendants can prove its awards season mettle by sticking it out in the coming weeks.

[Figures via Box Office Mojo]


  • AS says:

    I thought for sure Shame would be no.1.

  • KevyB says:

    It's too bad the War Horse doesn't stutter or maybe dance ballet... then that movie would be a LOCK!

  • Charles says:

    I heard something funny at work a couple of weeks ago. One of my co-workers told me he had seen Hugo during the weekend. "It won't win any awards or anything like that, but it was good," he said. "I enjoyed it."

    I asked if he had seen anything else. "Yeah, New Year's Eve. Same as Hugo -- it's not going to win any awards, but it was a lot of fun."

    • AS says:

      I hope you responded with an uppercut to the jaw.

      • KevyB says:

        Not to be mean, but what EXACTLY is all the hoopla over Hugo? It's a perfectly decent movie, but all the Top Ten lists? What the hell? This website has bitched about how everybody falls all over themselves when a Clint Eastwood is about to be released, but at least his movies are forgotten when they aren't up to snuff. Scorsese could direct a fart and that'd end up on at least half of all Top Ten lists.

        • AS says:

          I'm totally with you. Hugo was nothing special (my comment was more in reference to the New Year's Eve remark). I really don't understand what it is with critics (and many moviegoers) about kids movies. They just fall over themselves praising stuff like Toy Story 3, Up and Wall-E (many compared it to KUBRICK!), while I get tricked into watching them every year, thinking I'm going to be impressed. Instead I just end up going "this is just like every other kids movie I've ever seen." And then you hear Time Magazine calling Hugo a "masterpiece" and I'm going "oh come on"! This is why it saddens me when I hear talk of David Fincher possibly spending a year of his life on 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and I just can't help but think "you know, he could be making something really great but no, he has to make his kids movie." A waste of a year!

      • Charles says:

        Nah, I laughed it off. Besides, I can't afford to punch out a co-worker and lose my job at the moment. Btw, Hugo was my favorite movie of 2011. I say that not to start an argument but to point out just how far apart it is from New Year's Eve.

  • [...] they’re all going to turn out for it at Christmas — not when they can see Tom Cruise hopping around the horizon in [...]

  • It is a nicely put together concept and shall be respected for that. Thank you for saying what needed to be said.