With no new movies opening in wide release during the final few days of 2016, many were not expecting a huge weekend turnout, or even a close race between the top 10 holdovers. It's fitting that the unpredictable year that was 2016 went out with a bang, as six of the top 10 movies posted increases from last weekend. Although the box office winner was no surprise, as Rogue One took the top spot with an estimated $49.5 million over the three-day weekend, and $64.3 million over the four-day holiday weekend. This tally brings Rogue One up to $439.7 million, just $46.5 million shy of becoming 2016's top-grossing movie, a title currently held by Finding Dory ($486.2 million).
Box Office Mojo reports that Rogue One's three-day gross of $49.5 million represents just a 22.6% drop from last weekend, but when the four-day total of $64.3 million is taken into account, it actually increased 0.5% from its previous frame. Rogue One has currently earned $439.7 million domestically and $350 million in foreign markets for a worldwide total of $789.7 million, from a whopping $200 million budget. While it should be able to pass Finding Dory for the top spot domestically, it still has some work to do internationally. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is currently the seventh highest-grossing film worldwide, behind Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice ($873.3 million), The Secret Life of Pets ($875.5 million), The Jungle Book ($966.6 million), Zootopia ($1.023 billion), Finding Dory ($1.027 billion) and Captain America: Civil War ($1.1 billion).
The top 10 from last weekend remained largely intact, with a few movie swapping places and only one movie, Office Christmas Party failing to crack the top 10, dropping from ninth place to 13th place. Sing, Universal's hit animated musical, only added seven theaters this weekend to 4,029 theaters, but that was enough to post an impressive 21.4% increase from last weekend, giving Rogue One a run for its money in second place with $42.8 million. Sony's Passengers stayed put in third place with $16.1 million, posting a solid 7.3% increase from last weekend despite not adding any additional theaters this weekend. Disney's Moana jumped from sixth place to fourth place with $10.9 million, adding 88 additional theaters bringing its total to 2,775, posting a 42.3% increase from last weekend. 20th Century Fox's Why Him? rounds out the top 5 with $10.6 million, adding 91 theaters to bring its total to 3,008, posting a minimal decrease of 3.7%.
The top 10 is rounded out by Fences ($10 million), La La Land ($9.5 million), Assassin's Creed ($8.6 million), Manchester-by-the-Sea ($4.2 million) and Collateral Beauty ($4.1 million), which are great numbers even for the bottom half of the top 10. Fences added 68 theaters to bring its tally to 2,301, as it posted a superb 50.2% increase as it jumped from seventh place last weekend to sixth this weekend. The award for biggest increase, though, goes to La La Land, which added just 16 theaters for a total of 750, posting a whopping 65.7% increase over the weekend. Assassin's Creed added 26 theaters for a total of 2,966, and while it was one of the few films to actually decrease this weekend, it only suffered a minimal drop of 16.3%. Manchester-by-the-Sea rose from 13th place to ninth place, although it actually dropped seven theaters for a total of 1,206, with its $4.2 million representing an increase of 53.1% over last weekend. Rounding out the top 10 is Collateral Beauty, which dropped 283 theaters for a total of 2,745, with its $4.1 million representing a drop of just 2.9% from its tally last weekend.
No box office data was given for Ocean Waves this weekend, but Bleecker Street's Paterson and A24's 20th Century Women posted solid debuts in limited release. Paterson earned $69,334 from four theaters for a $17,334 per-screen average, while 20th Century Women earned $112,705 from four theaters for a $28,176 per-screen average. It remains to be seen whether or not each of these films will expand into more theaters in the weeks to come.
Paterson (Adam Driver) is a hardworking bus driver in Paterson, N.J., who follows the same routine every day. He observes the city and listens to fragments of conversations while picking up and dropping off his passengers. Paterson also writes heartfelt poems in a notebook, walks his dog and drinks one beer in a bar after his shift is over. Waiting for him at home is Laura (Golshifteh Farahani), his beloved wife who champions his gift for writing. Paterson is written and directed by Jim Jarmusch, with a supporting cast that includes Rizwan Manji, Barry Shabaka Henley, Chasten Harmon, William Jackson Harper and Method Man.
Ocean Waves was released in Japan in 1993, but it never received a theatrical or a home video release in the United States, until now. Rarely seen outside of Japan, Ocean Waves is a subtle, poignant and wonderfully detailed story of adolescence and teenage isolation. Taku and his best friend Yutaka are headed back to school for what looks like another uneventful year. But they soon find their friendship tested by the arrival of Rikako, a beautiful new transfer student from Tokyo whose attitude vacillates wildly from flirty and flippant to melancholic. When Taku joins Rikako on a trip to Tokyo, the school erupts with rumors, and the three friends are forced to come to terms with their changing relationships. Ocean Waves was the first Studio Ghibli film directed by someone other than studio founders Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, as director Tomomi Mochizuki led a talented staff of younger employees in an adaptation of Saeko Himuro's best-selling novel. Full of shots bathed in a palette of pleasingly soft pastel colors and rich in the unexpected visual details typical of Studio Ghibli's most revered works, Ocean Waves is an accomplished teenage drama and a true discovery.
Next weekend marks the first official frame of 2017, with Screen Gems' Underworld: Blood Wars being the only new movie opening in wide release. Focus Features is also expanding A Monster Calls nationwide, but no exact theater count has been given yet. Also opening in limited release is Film Movement's The Ardennes, IFC's I, Daniel Blake and Well Go USA's Railroad Tigers. Take a look at the top 10 for the final weekend of 2016.