Earlier this week, Star Wars: The Force Awakens surpassed Avatar as the highest-grossing movie of all time at the domestic box office, passing its six-year mark of $760.5 million. While there's still quite a ways to go before it breaks that movie's all-time worldwide record of $2.7 billion, the film hasn't even opened in China yet, one of the biggest international markets. As Star Wars: The Force Awakens heads into its fourth weekend at the box office, it faces two new wide releases, Focus Features' The Forest and Freestyle Releasing's The Masked Saint, with The Revenant expanding nationwide. Like everything that has faced the movie so far, neither of these new releases stand a chance this weekend, with Star Wars: The Force Awakens winning for the fourth weekend in a row with $41.6 million.
With all of the box office records Star Wars: The Force Awakens has broken so far, many are expecting this sci-fi adventure to continue dominating its competition well into the month of January. After a successful run in limited release, The Revenant debuted in second place with an estimated $38 million. The thriller The Forest opened in fourth place with $13 million in its opening weekend. It remains to be seen if Star Wars: The Force Awakens will be able to take the box office crown in its fifth weekend.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens broke yet another box office record last weekend, with its $90.2 million take shattering Avatar's third weekend record of $68.4 million. It also came in a bit higher than the $88.3 million estimates released on Sunday. Star Wars: The Force Awakens has earned $812 million domestically, and $921 million internationally for a global total of $1.73 billion. While it's certainly feasible that Star Wars: The Force Awakens could eventually break Avatar's all-time records, there is one thing to consider: Avatar spent much more time in theaters, and it posted minimal decreases from weekend to weekend. Still, Star Wars: The Force Awakens' dropped just 39.8% in its second weekend, and 39.5% in its third weekend, which may be enough to break Avatar's records very soon.
Daddy's Home dropped to third place with $15 million, followed by The Forest in fourth place with $13 million. The Forest, set in the Aokigahara forest at the base of Mt. Fuji, also known as the Suicide Forest, tells the story of a young American woman (Natalie Dormer) who goes in search of her twin sister, who has mysteriously disappeared. Despite everyone's warnings to "stay on the path," Sara enters the forest determined to discover the truth about her sister's fate, only to be confronted by the angry and tormented souls of the dead who prey on anyone who wanders into the forest.
Inspired by true events, The Revenant is an immersive and visceral cinematic experience capturing one man's epic adventure of survival and the extraordinary power of the human spirit. In an expedition of the uncharted American wilderness, legendary explorer Hugh Glass (Leonardo DiCaprio) is brutally attacked by a bear and left for dead by members of his own hunting team. In a quest to survive, Glass endures unimaginable grief as well as the betrayal of his confidant John Fitzgerald (Tom Hardy). Guided by sheer will and the love of his family, Glass must navigate a vicious winter in a relentless pursuit to live and find redemption.
The Revenant opened with an impressive $474,560 from four theaters during its Christmas weekend debut, with a stellar $118,640 per-screen average. What's even more impressive, though, is it barely decreased at all in its second weekend in limited release. It earned $447,829 from four theaters for a $111,957 per-screen average, a decrease of just 5.6%. The nationwide expansion should prove to be fruitful for this critically-acclaimed drama, currently holding an 81% Rotten Tomatoes rating, and it is expected to open in approximately 2,700 theaters for its nationwide expansion.
Rounding out the top 10 is Sisters ($7.1 million), The Hateful Eight ($6.35 million), The Big Short ($6.3 million), Alvin and The Chipmunks: The Road Chip ($5.4 million), Joy ($4.5 million), Concussion ($3 million). Opening in limited release this weekend is IFC's Anesthesia, Sundance Selects' The Treasure and Reliance Big Pictures' Wazir. It isn't known if there are any plans to expand these indie projects nationwide in the weeks and months ahead.
Looking ahead to next weekend, Star Wars: The Force Awakens may have its first big test yet, with three high-profile wide releases. Disney's blockbuster will go up against Paramount's 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, Universal's Ride Along 2 and Lionsgate's animated comedy Norm of the North in wide release next weekend. Also opening in limited release is Gravitas Ventures' Band of Robbers, Samuel Goldwyn Films' The Benefactor and China Lion's Detective Chinatown. Until then take a look at the predictions for this weekend at the box office, and check back next week for the January 15 predictions.
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: