December proves a mega month for blockbusters
The last month of 2013 saw some of the largest takings for the year, and that’s mainly thanks to a handful of films. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug made its debut at the beginning of the month and proceeded to generate huge revenue for its production houses New Line Cinema, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and WingNut Films. In fact, within three weeks of its release the film had already taken over £30 million and is currently ranked at number 7 for the 2013 Box Office. That’s hugely impressive, and we’ll no doubt see that rank increase slowly throughout January.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire also continued to do well taking a further £10 million this month. This means it finishes its sixth week at the end of December as the 4th highest-ranking film of the year with a total of £31 million so far. It seems Jennifer Lawrence will carry forward her unstoppable reign on the box office into 2014, especially with American Hustle having just been released. There are no figures on that as of yet, but it’s expected to do very well with such a strong cast and prominent marketing campaign.
Frozen is the other big blockbuster released this month and after 4 weeks it’s generated an impressive £23 million for Disney. That’s perhaps more astounding considering it doesn’t have the attachment of a pervious film or franchise to sell the film; although it did strongly advertise its similarities to other recent animated favourites Tangled and Wreck-It Ralph.
In its second week, Anchorman: The Legend Continues has performed well gaining £8 million. That’s much more than most straight up comedies ever dream of generating and shows the power of a cult following that’s grown since the first film’s debut in 2004.
Most other films have fallen out of the Top 15 UK Chart due to new releases, but Saving Mr Banks still clings on in number 13 with a total revenue gain of just over £3.5 million. The film centres around the writer of Mary Poppins, P.L. Travers, played by Emma Thompson, and Walt Disney himself, played by Tom Hanks; it was never going to attract huge numbers, despite the two big name leads. What we like about this is that Thompson and Hanks still want to make quality films on a smaller scale and about smaller stories, and aren’t always chasing the biggest movies with the biggest dollar signs. If you’re a fan of Hanks in particular, then keep and eye on our Person of the Month page and the new Hanks reviews we’ll be putting up throughout the month.
The last couple of weeks has seen the release of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and 47 Ronin with the Ben Stiller dramatic comedy taking almost twice as much at the box office as the Keanu Reeves kung fu flick. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty has globally out performed the latter; that’s a major concern considering 47 Ronin cost almost double to make with an approximate budget of $175 million. An action film like 47 Ronin should really be pulling in a far bigger crowd, especially against a cult comedy, but it’s unlikely to see a significant uplift in popularity due to average reviews and plenty of competition in January.
For more information on box office results check out our weekly box office article. Oh, and Happy New Year!Click here to view the latest Box Office Table