B.O. Analysis, Nov. 30: ‘Christmases’ Tops Second-Biggest Thanksgiving Weekend

The second biggest Thanksgiving weekend ever as Warner Brothers’ perfectly timed Four Christmases, starring Vince Vaughn and Reese Witherspoon tops the chart with $46.7 million for the five day (Wed. through Sunday) period.

The holiday-themed comedy posted the third best Thanksgiving opening ever and led a very strong lineup to a terrific (and second best ever) overall 5-day total of $236 million.

Teen juggernaut Twilight from Summit Entertainment held onto the No. 2 spot for the Wednesday through Sunday period. The film held very strong mid-week but dropped about 62 percent in its second weekend of release. No matter as the film, budgeted in the high $30 million range, has earned nearly $120 million to date.

At No. 3 for the five-day totals was Disney’s animated Bolt, which benefitted from a family-friendly theme and great word-of-mouth, thus fully taking advantage of the opportunity that the family-oriented holiday had to offer.

James Bond continues his winning ways as Sony’s Quantum of Solace dropped a miniscule 27 percent in its third weekend of release and is now zeroing in on $150 million in domestic receipts.

Rounding out the top five was the epic Australia, starring Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman. The Baz Luhrman-directed film has earned $20 million since opening on Wednesday and has actually performed quite well considering its nearly three-hour running time and adult themes.

Also debuting was the Jason Statham actioner Transporter 3, which earned $18.5 million since Wednesday, enough to land it in the sixth spot for the five days of Thanksgiving. With a modest budget and home video success a foregone conclusion, the Transporter series has more than earned its keep at the box-office.

Finally, and most impressively, Focus Features’ Milk starring Sean Penn earned a whopping $51,836 per theatre in just 36 locations for its five-day debut of $1.9 million. The critically-acclaimed film will expand in the coming weeks as the Oscar buzz builds and the word-of-mouth campaign builds the fortunes of this true story of Harvey Milk directed by Gus Van Sant.

Another great weekend at the box-office as this makes it four weekends in a row, ahead of last year’s comparable timeframe as audience continue to enjoy the diversity and quality of this year’s impressive crop of films.

FIVE-DAY STUDIO ESTIMATES (source by Media by Numbers)

1. NEW! Four Christmases (Warner Bros.) – $46.7M; 3310 theaters; $14,112 PTA;

2. Twilight (Summit Ent.) – $39.5M; 3425 theaters; $11,539 PTA; -43%; $119.6M cume

3. Bolt (Disney) – $36M; 3652 theaters; $9,860 PTA; -37%; $66.8M cume

4. Quantum of Solace (Sony/MGM) – $28.1M; 3501theaters; $8,026 PTA; -5%; $142M cume

5. NEW! Australia (Fox) – $20M; 2642 theaters; $7,570 PTA

6. Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (Paramount) – $19.6M; 3709 theaters; $5,284 PTA; -25%; $159.5M cume

7. NEW! Transporter 3 (Lionsgate) – $18.5M; 2626 theaters; $7,045 PTA

8. Role Models (Universal) – $7.8M; 2195 theaters; $3,558 PTA; -7%; $57.8M cume

9. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (Miramax) – $2.1M; 582 theaters; $3,763 PTA; -33%; $5.1M cume

10. NEW! Milk (Focus) – $1.8M; 36 theaters; $51,836 PTA