WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: “Mission” OWNS. “Tin Tin” stumbles. God Damn “Chipmunks”

By Paul Shirey

I don’t know why it’s such a big surprise, but Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol has easily topped the box office earning 26.5 million over the Christmas weekend, bringing its total (from limited release showings) to $59 million.  Paramount is predicting another $13 million in ticket sales on Monday, which would bring the film to a $72 million take, damn close to the total domestic take of Cruise’s last two outings, Knight and Day ($76 million) and Valkyrie ($83.1 million).  Ghost Protocol has already crossed the $100 million mark internationally and may well close out with $200 million by the time final overseas weekend numbers are in.

What’s the lesson we’ve learned here, kids?  I think it comes down to showmanship.  If a movie looks good and actually IS good, then it really doesn’t matter if the star of said movie jumps on couches on talk shows or believes in some weird religious shit.  We just want good movies and that’s all that should matter.   I think Cruise has eaten enough humble pie at this point.

Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows held strong in the number 2 spot with $17.8 million (total cume of $76.6 million), lagging slightly behind its predecessor’s numbers.  Regardless, Ritchie, Downey Jr., and Law can rest easy that they have delivered on the franchise.

Those Goddamn Chipmunks came in third with Chipwrecked, another in a long line of unnecessary sequels.  The 3D pic earned $13.3 million over the weekend (total cume of $50.3 million), which is below expectations by the studio, so perhaps any future sequels will go straight to DVD (fingers crossed).

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo came in fourth (yes, it was beat by Chipmunks…), pulling in $13 million (total cume of $21.4 million).  I guess it shouldn’t be that surprising given the dark and violent nature of the film, but Fincher is no stranger to this.  Fight Club was kind of an abysmal failure at the box office, yet is now heralded as a cult staple.  There’s plenty of time to rake in the dollars, but it’s unlikely that “Tattoo” will bring in blockbuster numbers.

Rounding out the top five is Spielberg/Jackson’s The Adventures of Tin Tin, which grossed $9 million (total cume of 17.1 million).  The mo-cap romp featuring the internationally famous character created by Belgian artist Herge has failed to connect with American audiences, but is soaring overseas with a total of $240 million in ticket sales thus far.  All things considered, a $9 mil take is rather sad given the talent involved.

So, to wrap up: Cruise is back, Sherlock is still a contender, Chipmunks…fuck, Dragon Tattoo is destined for cult status, and Spielberg couldn’t take the top spot even with TWO films released at Christmas.  That’s right; Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson got OWNED by six high-pitched rodents.

SOURCE: The Hollywood Reporter


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