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Per Theater Chart: American Shoots for the Top

December 31st, 2014

American Sniper poster

American Sniper led the way on the per theater chart with an estimated average of $152,500 in four theaters. This is the second best per theater average of the year, behind just The Grand Budapest Hotel and ahead of The Imitation Game. Second place for the weekend was Selma, which earned an average of $30,076 in 19 theaters during their Oscar-qualifying run. Two Days, One Night was a surprise entry in the $10,000 club earning an average of $24,118 in two theaters. It earned amazing reviews, but it didn't have as much buzz behind it as other film's that opening on Christmas. Into the Woods was the best of the wide releases in the $10,000 club earning an average of $12,726 in 2,440 theaters. Last week's winner, Inherent Vice, was next with an estimated average of $12,500 in 16 theaters. The overall box office leader, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, earned an average of $10,689, while The Imitation Game was right behind with $10,618. The final film in the $10,000 club was Mr. Turner with an average of $10,498 in 24 theaters.

There were not many other new limited releases, with Leviathan the best of the rest with an average of $7,578 in two theaters. The Interview's last-minute limited release earned an estimated average of $5,471 in 331 theaters. This is particularly amazing, because it also earned an estimated $15 million in Video on Demand. The final limited release we have numbers for is Big Eyes, which barely avoided the Mendoza Line with an average of $2,297 in just over $1,300 theaters.

This past week also saw milestones reached for a few Per Theater Chart alumni:

  • The Homesman got to $2 million early last week, but that's as far as it will go.
  • The Interview earned more than $1 million over the weekend, $2 million if you include Christmas day. I have no idea where it goes from here, because this is truly a weird case. I can't think of another film that was the target of cyber-terrorism. On a side note, it looks like North Korea wasn't responsible for the Sony hack. The FBI is now saying North Korea had "international help" and I think that will change to "inside help" shortly before eventually being ruled an inside job. This makes the most sense, when you look at the information released by the hackers. Without going into details, which would be unethical due to how they were obtained, much of the information looked at how much profit Sony was making and how well certain people who worked there were paid. That doesn't make Sony look bad. ... Unless Sony just fired a bunch of people in a cost-saving measure. That did happen just before the hack, so a disgruntled former employee and not North Korea is likely responsible for what happened. Obviously it wasn't North Korea. Here's a picture of North Korea at night. They don't have electricity. I seriously doubt they have the ability to hack Sony. Not unless Sony's password is 12345.
  • Big Eyes opened bigger with $3 million over the weekend and $4 million including Christmas. However, while it reached $5 million yesterday, its per theater average is low enough that it might not get to $10 million, despite the New Year's Day.
  • As expected, Foxcatcher hit $5 million before the weekend and if it can keep picking up Awards Season nominations / wins, it will get to $10 million.
  • P.K. reached $5 million before the weekend and it is already halfway to $10 million. It is already one of the biggest Bollywood hits in North America and getting to $10 million would be a huge milestone.
  • The Imitation Game expanded into hundreds of theaters and that helped it roar past $10 million over the weekend. It has already reached $15 million and should top $20 million shortly.
  • The Theory of Everything topped $20 million before the weekend and it is on pace to get to $25 million shortly.

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Filed under: Weekend Box Office, Theater Averages, Big Eyes, Selma, The Theory of Everything, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Into the Woods, The Interview, Foxcatcher, Inherent Vice, The Theory of Everything, The Imitation Game, Mr. Turner, American Sniper, The Homesman, Leviafan, P.K.