Christmas box office: Les Miserables and Django Unchained do well

Christmas box office: Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway in Les Miserables

It’s too early to have any official numbers, but it looks like both LES MISERABLES and DJANGO UNCHAINED (read our reviews by clicking on the links) are serving up Hollywood holiday treats at the Christmas box office.  The musical LES MISERABLES seemed destined for the top spot after posting the most pre-sale Christmas day ticket sales in history and the numbers indicate it will haul in somewhere around $17.5 million.  That’s an impressive single day number because even though the film is a famous musical, it is kind of depressing and not necessarily something people want to experience over Christmas.  But fan reviews seem to be hailing it as the greatest movie ever made, even though most critics seem to settle on “good”.

Speaking of movies that people don’t want to see on Christmas, how about DJANGO UNCHAINED?  Quentin Tarantino’s controversial, violent Western about slavery looks like it will manage to take in close to $13 million, which is much more than I would have expected it to make.  I guess audiences aren’t so turned off by the fact the n-word is said 109 times.  It’s a great film, but not something I would expect to do well on Christmas day.  But good word of mouth should propel the film through the weekend.  Until now, I don’t think DJANGO UNCHAINED was getting much serious Oscar attention, but a good showing at the Christmas box office is a nice way to turn some heads.  With a chance of up to ten movies to be nominated for Best Picture, Django might have a chance to sneak in there.

Last weekend’s number one film, THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY fell to third place, bringing in around $8 million.  The horrific looking PARENTAL GUIDANCE with Billy Crystal and Bette Midler should bring in about $4 million while Tom Cruise’s JACK REACHER and Judd Apatow’s THIS IS 40 rounded out the top five.  (Deadline)

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