Box Office: The Force is Strong with ‘Rogue One’ $155M Weekend

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"Rogue One: A Star Wars Story" (2016) - Box Office

‘Rogue One’ Scores Another Star Wars Hit for Disney

The Force continues to be strong with the Disney era of Star Wars. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story blasted past the competition this weekend with an estimated $155 million.

After Star Wars: The Force Awakens broke records galore last year, there was no doubt that Rogue One would open much lower than the 2015 blockbuster. Nothing against this first “Anthology” film, but this was expected. The Force Awakens was the first Star Wars film in over a decade and to some even the best since The Empire Strikes Back. Despite heavily positive reviews, lightning did not strike twice for this more adult installment in the space opera. To its credit, Rogue One did pull in the second biggest December opening ever and 12th overall. While opening lower than Captain America: Civil War ($179.1 million) and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice ($166.0 million), Rogue One will have much longer replay value in theaters thanks to the holidays. The goal right now is to top Finding Dory’s $486.3 million, which should be a near-lock.

After three weeks on top, Disney’s island princess, Moana, dropped one spot to second place. While the rest of the holdovers collapsed thanks to Rogue One, Moana dipped a mere 37.1%. Like its run so far, Moana continues to hold much like a cross between Tangled and Toy Story 2. $200 million seems almost a certainty before 2017 rolls in. The biggest threat right now is Illumination’s Sing, due out on Wednesday. At its current pace, the latest Disney princess continues to flirt with $250 million.

Also down a spot from last weekend is raunchy comedy, Office Christmas Party. The Paramount flick fell 50%, pulling in about $8.5 million in its second weekend. That’s in between the sophomore drops of Bad Santa 2 and Almost Christmas. Holiday legs should be able to push the Jennifer Aniston and Jason Bateman comedy close to $50 million. Though, a new slew of holiday releases on Wednesday and Friday will not help the cause.

For Will Smith, it was an ugly scene as his holiday release, Collateral Beauty settled for $7 million. The Warner Bros. drama was certainly a box office low for Smith. Even with a solid ensemble featuring Helen Mirren, Keira Knightley and Edward Norton couldn’t sway audiences into theaters this weekend. His previous holiday releases such as Seven Pounds, Concussion, Ali and The Pursuit of Happyness all performed much better. Its A- grade on Cinemascore didn’t do much to help the cause either.

Rounding out the charts this week is Harry Potter spin-off, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. In its fifth weekend, Fantastic Beasts pulled in another $5 million. That brings the film over $207 million. Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange continues to lead the film at the same point. Both films are still aiming between $235-240 million.

Rogue One matched my Thursday prediction. However, Collateral Beauty couldn’t muster up my $10 million estimate.

Note: These #’s are based on Sunday’s projections and can change with Monday’s actual #’s.

#1 – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (NR)
$155.0 million / $155.0 million total

#2 – Moana (1)
$11.7 million / $161.9 million total

#3 – Office Christmas Party (2)
$8.5 million / $31.5 million total

#4 – Collateral Beauty (NR)
$7.0 million  / $7.0 million total

#5 – Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them (3)
$5.0 million / $207.7 million total

Opening Next Week: Assassin’s Creed, Passengers, Sing, (all Wednesday), Why Him? (Friday)

Source: Box Office Mojo