Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey officially hit theaters this past weekend and has set a new December opening weekend record. The film surpassed the $77.2 million earned by Will Smith-starrer I Am Legend the same weekend in 2007. The Peter Jackson film debuted in 4,045 theaters in which it averaged a strong $20,958 per location.
The film received an A CinemaScore from moviegoers. 58% of the audience was over the ages of 25 and males made up 57% of the audience. $10.1 million of the domestic total came from the 326 IMAX theaters the film opened in this weekend. That’s an average of $31,000 per screen. Internationally, the picture broke an IMAX December record grossing $5 million in 126 IMAX locations (an average of $40,000). The IMAX locations which showed the film in 48 fps were quite strong, generating $44,000 per screen domestically and $57,000 per screen internationally. IMAX’s global weekend total for “The Hobbit” is an estimated $15+ million, which is a record for December.
Other films playing over the weekend also did very well. DreamWorks Animation’s Rise of the Guardians remained in second place with $7.4 million for a four-week total of $71.4 million. DreamWorks Pictures’ Lincoln climbed a spot to third with $7.2 million. The $65 million Steven Spielberg film has earned $107.9 million after six weeks in theaters.
Skyfall drastically dropped from first place to fourth. Worldwide, the film has earned $951 million to date.
Life of Pi sits at the fifth spot with $5.4 million its fourth weekend. The Twentieth Century Fox Film release has collected $69.6 million after four weeks.