Weekend Box Office: Audiences Get ‘Taken’ Again

The second weekend of January brought big business to the box office. The sole worldwide release saw global success, and the awards hopefuls continue to buzz. With the Oscar nominations announcements this week, get ready to see some of the arty titles climb the charts.

Dethroning the mighty ‘Hobbit’ finale was the final installment of another franchise, ‘Taken 3‘. The Liam Neeson action thriller opened to $40.4 million domestically, placing it in the #2 spot of all time for a January release. (Last year’s ‘Ride Along‘ still own the top January honors.) Considering how bad the second installment was compared to the first ‘Taken’, it’s surprising to see that ‘Taken 3’ was only down $8.6 million from the debut of ‘Taken 2’. Overseas, the film is also off to a great start with $51.4 million.

Climbing up from 22 to 2,179 screens, the highly acclaimed Martin Luther King, Jr. drama ‘Selma‘ made its way into second place. An $11.2 million weekend brings its domestic run up to $13.4 million.

Into the Woods‘ dropped down a slot into third place. Its $9.7 million third weekend pushed its run beyond the $100 million mark. While it has grossed $105.2 million domestically, the movie’s slow-rolling overseas run has yet to fully kick off.

In its fourth weekend, ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies‘ finally took a steep hit. Its 56% drop-off and $9.4 million weekend dropped the film into the #4 spot. At this point, the final ‘Hobbit’ title has earned $236.5 million domestically and $545.3 million overseas. That $781.8 million worldwide run ranks second-best for a 2014 release behind ‘Transformers: Age of Extinction’, which scored $1.08 billion.

Unbroken‘ rounded out the Top 5 with an $8.3 million third weekend. Like ‘Into the Woods’, the World War II drama has grossed $101.6 million.

The expansion of Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice‘ from 16 to 645 screens brought in decent business ($2.9 million), but not enough for it to land a spot in the Top 10. Combined with the four weeks in limited release, the picture has earned a collective $4.4 million.

Debuting on just nine screens, ‘Beloved Sisters‘ collected only $25,000. Considering that this is supposed to be a contender for a Foreign Language Film Oscar nomination, the movie’s $2,778 per-screen average isn’t at all good. However, it might do better next weekend if it actually makes Oscar’s list.

Top 10:

1. ‘Taken 3’ (Fox) – $40,400,000

2. ‘Selma’ (Paramount) – $11,200,000

3. ‘Into the Woods’ (Buena Vista) – $9,750,000

4. ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies’ (Warner Bros.) – $9,435,000

5. ‘Unbroken’ (Universal) – $8,368,000

6. ‘The Imitation Game’ (Weinstein) – $7,624,000

7. ‘Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb’ (Fox) – $6,700,000

8. ‘Annie’ (Sony) – $4,919,000

9. ‘The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death’ (Relativity) – $4,825,000

10. ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1’ (Lionsgate) – $3,750,000

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