‘Breaking Dawn – Part 2’ and ‘Skyfall’ Lead Record-Breaking Thanksgiving Weekend

on November 25, 2012 by Daniel Garris

5-Day Studio Estimates:

Breaking Dawn - Part 2 -- $64.0 million
Skyfall -- $51.1 million
Lincoln -- $34.1 million
Rise of the Guardians -- $32.6 million
Life of Pi -- $30.2 million
Wreck-It Ralph -- $23.0 million
Red Dawn -- $22.0 million
Flight -- $11.4 million
Silver Linings Playbook -- $5.9 million
Argo -- $5.1 million

Coming as no surprise, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 was able to fend off three new wide releases to remain in first place over Thanksgiving weekend with an estimated three-day take of $43.07 million. The fifth and final installment of the blockbuster fantasy franchise fell 69 percent from last weekend, which was nearly on par with the 70 percent The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 fell in its second weekend of release last November. With a ten-day take of $226.95 million, Breaking Dawn - Part 2 is currently running 3 percent stronger than the $220.83 million ten-day gross of Breaking Dawn - Part 1.

Skyfall continued to claim second place with an estimated three-day gross of $36.0 million. The 23rd installment of the James Bond franchise fell just 12 percent from last weekend, as it continues to benefit from strong word of mouth and continued IMAX grosses. Skyfall, which is already the highest grossing James Bond film ever without adjusting for ticket-price inflation, zoomed past the $200 million domestic mark this weekend and has now grossed $221.72 million to date.

Holding up even stronger this weekend was Lincoln. The Steven Spielberg directed drama starring Daniel Day-Lewis was up a fantastic 19 percent over last weekend to take third with an estimated $25.02 million over the three-day frame. Strong word of mouth, expanding into an additional 243 locations and the fact that the film is skewing towards older moviegoers all helped the film out this weekend. Lincoln has grossed a stronger than expected $62.18 million to date.

With the top 12 films totaling nearly $282 million on their own since Wednesday, the extended holiday weekend set a new record for the largest 5-day Thanksgiving frame of all time. The previous record was set back in 2009 with an estimated combined gross of $270 million.

Turning towards this weekend's new wide releases, Rise of the Guardians led the way with a fourth place estimated take of $24.03 million. However, that performance was below widespread pre-release expectations for the film heading into the weekend. The 3D computer animated film from DreamWorks grossed $32.58 million over the five-day frame. With the aid of the holiday season and an A rating on CinemaScore, Rise of the Guardians will hope to hold up well going forward, which will be especially important after this weekend's debut. The audience break-down for Rise of the Guardians skewed towards female moviegoers (57 percent) and slightly towards moviegoers under 25 (53 percent).

Internationally, Rise of the Guardians grossed $10 million this weekend, with Russia being responsible for $5.85 million of that gross. Rise of the Guardians has grossed $13.5 million internationally thus far and is set to open in a larger number of foreign territories next weekend.

Life of Pi opened nearly as large as Rise of the Guardians this weekend (and exceeded its much more modest expectations in the process). The Ang Lee directed 3D film was off to respective estimated three-day and five-day starts of $22.0 million and $30.15 million. Life of Pi didn't get off to the strongest of starts on Wednesday, but really picked up steam on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. That is a good sign for the film going forward, as is the early awards buzz surrounding the film and the A- rating it received on CinemaScore. Odds are strong that Life of Pi will hold up well throughout the holiday season.

Life of Pi grossed a very encouraging $17.5 million internationally from just four foreign markets. The film's grosses by territory this weekend included $10.5 million in China, $3.4 million in India, $2.2 million in Taiwan and $1.4 million in Hong Kong.

Red Dawn debuted towards the higher end of its pre-release expectations with respective estimated three-day and five-day takes of $14.6 million and $22.0 million. The action remake starring Chris Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson opened a hair above the respective $21.19 million and $21.09 million five-day Thanksgiving weekend debuts of 2007's Hitman and 2009's Ninja Assassin. The audience breakdown for Red Dawn skewed towards male moviegoers (62 percent) and slightly towards moviegoers 25 and older (52 percent). Red Dawn received a B rating on CinemaScore.

In limited release Silver Linings Playbook took in an estimated $4.62 million over the weekend to land in ninth place among all films. The awards season hopeful from The Weinstein Company played in just 367 locations this weekend, giving it a 3-day per-location average of $12,597. If the estimate holds, Silver Linings Playbook will slightly outpace the $12,398 per-location average of Lincoln this weekend. Silver Linings Playbook grossed $5.9 million over the five-day frame and has grossed $6.45 million to date.

Tags: Silver Linings Playbook, Red Dawn, Life of Pi, Rise of the Guardians, Lincoln, Skyfall, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2

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