Two films that are at contrasting ends of the movie spectrum have taken the US box office by storm.
Musical Les Miserables and spaghetti western Django Unchained took a combined total of nearly $34million in just one day.
Universal Pictures’ star-studded Les Miserables took in a weekday Christmas record of $18.2 million in the United States and Canada when it opened on Tuesday, according to studio estimates of weekday ticket sales.
Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained, which stars Jamie Foxx and Leonardo DiCaprio, hauled nearly $15 million for The Weinstein Company.
Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway’s star power also helped to set a new record for a movie-musical opening day. Disney blockbuster High School Musical 3 previously held the record.
The strong Christmas-day box office performance by Les Miserables and Django Unchained put Hollywood on pace to set an all-time box office record with $10.8 billion in annual revenue.
Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian said studios ‘are definitely on the road to a record year with $10.8 billion expected (up 6 percent over last year and beating the previous record of $10.6 billion in 2009).’
He added that the number of tickets sold should climb 6 percent from 2011 to 1.36 billion.
Dergarabedian credits a successful marketing year for studios as a chief reason for the projected box-office record, as well as spring and summer smashes The Hunger Games and The Avengers helping boost revenue.
‘It was not just the fact that most of the movies delivered, it was the timing of their release dates and the marketing was obviously effective as well with social media continuing to provide an outlet for the movie-going peer group to talk about their favorite flicks,’ Dergarabedian said.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, based on the J.R.R. Tolkein classic fantasy novel, brought in $11.4 million on Christmas day after ruling the box office with nearly $37 million in sales over the weekend.
Billy Crystal family comedy Parental Guidance debuted in fourth place with about $6.4 million in Christmas sales while Tom Cruise’s Jack Reacher, which featured author Lee Child’s character in an investigation into a sniper shooting, was fifth with $5.3 million.
While Les Mis may be hotly tipped for Oscar glory, Django has been critisiced by several African Americans.