The Clint Eastwood directed film ‘American Sniper’ has been on a record breaking streak since its release in December but since its expansion this weekend, it has destroyed the competition with a massive $89.5M. When you add in the holiday, the fours-day Martin Luther King Jr. weekend gives ‘American Sniper’ an estimated haul of $105.3M.
For the rest of the top 5, ‘Paddington’ and ‘Selma’ had solid numbers while ‘The Wedding Ringer’ and ‘Taken 3’ didn’t fair so well.
For a full run down of the box office, continue reading!
‘American Sniper’ set the record for the biggest January opening weekend with $89.5M, doubling the gross of former title holder ‘Ride Along’. The film also set records for the second highest opening weekend for a rater-R movie, behind ‘Passion of the Christ’. The film also surpassed the other films nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars to become the highest grossing nominee. In fact, it made more than ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ did in its entire run by Saturday and more than ‘Birdman’, ‘The Theory of Everything’, ‘Boyhood’ and ‘Whiplash’ combined.
Clint Eastwood also set personal bests. The film is currently Eastwood’s second highest grossing film as a director and is the largest opening weekend, destroying ‘Gran Torino’s’ opening weekend of $29M.
In a very distant second the Kevin Hart starring comedy ‘The Wedding Ringer’ which managed a so-so $20.6M. This is the fourth $20M debut in a row for the comedian but is off significantly for ‘Ride Along’ which debuted this time last year.
In third place is ‘Paddington’ with $19M which isn’t far off from similar titles that have debuted around this time of year. The film isn’t going to make the majority of its money in the U.S. and will rely mostly on international markets where it has already made $122M. This is really the only family option out right now so look for it to hold very well over the coming weeks.
In fourth is last weekends top movie ‘Taken 3’ which plummeted nearly 63 percent for a a take of $14.6M. Coupled with overwhelming competition from ‘American Sniper’ and a weakening of the brand, it isn’t surprising that it fell this much.
‘Selma’ was able to claim fifth place with $8.7 million. This is only off 22 percent from the previous weekend and can be attributed to Oscar nominations being released.
The top 12 earned an impressive $184.6 million which is up 20 percent from the same frame last year.