Welcome to the Box Office Report, where the more things change the more they stay the exact same.
1. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (Buena Vista): $29.9 million in 3,928 theaters
A movie that makes $70 million one week can earn $12 million the next. There are peaks and valleys, highs and lows, but nothing ever stays the same.
It's odd that The Hobbit has maintained its position at the top for the third straight week, with virtually no change from last week's $31.5 million, a five percent drop. But The Hobbit's sustained success is not surprising — most of the competition opening on Christmas day, usually a busy one at the movies, was a pile of hot garbage that quickly went up in flames. The De Niro-Stallone boxing movie Grudge Match, Keanu-as-Samurai 47 Ronin, and Justin Bieber's Believe all bombed, while Wolf of Wall Street and Walter Mitty are meant for older audiences. (Wolf's R rating was always going to hold it back slightly, especially over the holiday season. Quaaludes don't taste well with stuffing.)
2. Frozen (Beuna Vista): $28.8 million in 3,335 theaters
Disney's hit musical saw an increase in 46 percent grosses over over last week;s grosses. Family movies are obviously more popular over the Christmas weekend, but still, things make no sense and up is down. Per The Hollywood Reporter, Frozen is now Lion King-levels huge.
3. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (Paramount): $20.1 million in 3,507 theaters
At this point the public deserves a clean split from all the Anchorman guys for a solid five months. They should all take a nice vacation to St. Bart's and stay there while we re-adjust and learn to love them again.
4. American Hustle (Sony): $19.5 million in 2,507 theaters
I'm still not sure I liked American Hustle but it's worth seeing for the performances from Jennifer Lawrence and Amy Adams. (Yes, and the wardrobes and make-up too.) In a movie filled with manly men, the females bring the heat and give the movie its life.
5. Wolf of Wall Street (Paramount): $18.5 million in 2,537 theaters
As it was on Christmas day, ultimately Wolf's tepid audience reception and polarizing content — drugs! cursing! boobs! — doomed it to under perform. The Scorcese-DiCaprio flick has made $34.3 million over the five days since its release.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.