Thanksgiving meals are enjoyed hot out of the oven and as cold leftovers. And America enjoyed the same at the box office this weekend, choosing hot, then cold, with "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" and Disney's "Frozen."
"Catching Fire" held onto the #1 spot with $110.1 million from Wednesday to Sunday, knocking 12-year champion "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" from the top spot on the five-day-Thanksgiving scorecard. The $74.5 million gathered by "Catching Fire" since Friday gave "The Hunger Games" sequel the fourth biggest second weekend ever, behind "The Avengers," "Avatar" and "The Dark Knight."
Disney's "Frozen" had the biggest five-day Thanksgiving debut ever, surpassing the $80.1 million start from Disney/Pixar's "Toy Story 2" and the $68.7 opening of the Mouse House's "Tangled" with $93 million ($66.7 million of it since Friday). Like "Toy Story 2" and "Tangled," "Frozen" benefitted from overwhelmingly positive reviews and its family-friendly rating. The R-rated "Homefront" and "Oldboy" were both critical misses and their box-office debuts followed suit commercially. "Black Nativity" underperformed as well.
With a $7 million debut, Jason Statham's "Parker" was a box-office bomb earlier this year. Despite the addition of James Franco as the villain and a script co-written by Sylvester Stallone, "Homefront" followed suit with a $6.9 million debut. That was enough for #5, which was better than the $3.8 million made by "Black Nativity" over the weekend, which placed the poorly reviewed drama at #8.
Spike Lee's faithful remake of "Oldboy" made it into fewer than 600 theaters over the weekend ("Catching Fire" was in nearly 4,200), where it made a paltry $1.25 million over the five-day frame. Oscar-bait drama "Philomena" did well as it expanded to more than 800 theaters, putting its domestic total at $4.7 million. "The Book Thief" added 1,200 screens, putting its two-week total at $7.8 million.
"The Hunger Games" is likely to hold onto the top spot this week, with no serious competition until the arrival of "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" on December 13. "Catching Fire" has already made close to $300 million domestically, three-quarters of the $408 million "The Hunger Games" made during its entire run last year. Certainly all of those MTV Movie Awards, Jennifer Lawrence's "Silver Linings Playbook" Oscar and the continued popularity of the Young Adult source novels will likely propel "Catching Fire" beyond its predecessor.
Speaking of sequels beating the original, "Thor: The Dark World" passed 2011's "Thor" over the weekend. "The Dark World" was #3 with $11.1 million, for a $186.7 million domestic total and a worldwide haul of $591.1 million. It's now the most successful Marvel movie behind only "The Avengers" and the "Iron Man" flicks. Speaking of "Iron Man," May's third franchise entry remains 2013's biggest film, 'though "Catching Fire" grabbed the #2 opening weekend spot and should pass up the $366.9 million gross of "Despicable Me 2."