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article imageVampire saga stays on top as the buzz turns to 'Les Miserables'

By Tim O'Brien     Nov 25, 2012 in Entertainment
Before getting to the obvious headline for the box office news (record Thanksgiving), some are scratching their heads over the weak showing of "Rise of the Guardians."
In fact, no new film released over the long holiday weekend cracked the top three and that, too, is somewhat of a surprise, or is it? Not really since the vampire saga was going to win it even if it fell off 60-70 percent. The strength of the latest Bond movie is keeping it in contention while "Lincoln" expands and stays solid. So, it was a tough task for the newcomers to take a bite out of those.
Then there is that headline: Thanksgiving weekend breaks record. And that it did. But, as noted in a previous report here, that can be a bit deceiving, or at least, confusing. Can it really be called a weekend as the movies opened Wednesday? Yes, there are lists for these, too, so, let's look at the three-day and the five-day totals.
Thanksgiving
1. "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2" - five-day, $66 million; three-day, $43.8 million
2. "Skyfall" -five-day, $51.1 million; three-day, $36 million
3. "Lincoln" - five-day, $34.2 million; three-day, $25 million
4. "Rise Of The Guardians 3D" - five-day, $32 million; three-day, $23.5 million
5. "Life Of Pi 3D" - five-day, $30 million; three-day, $21.8 million
* Different headlines may be out and about so the bold item is for the usual three-day weekend totals.
This year will go down as the best turkey holiday box office with $288 million, which is also a five-day record, non holiday. That previous high was $270.5 million in 2009. See, it can get muddy. The previous all-time Thanksgiving holiday haul was in 2009 with $258.6 million.
Meanwhile, "Hitchcock," which got a small release on Friday, seems to want to stay under the radar. This is not a horror film but rather a film which looks at a time in the director's life - not always an easy sell.
Award notes
It has been learned that many Guild members have screened "Les Miserables" over the holiday weekend and the news is very good. Look for that film to be the front-runner when it gets released on Christmas. Not only that, the best actor race might be only between two this year - Hugh Jackman and Daniel Day-Lewis.
The others may only be window dressing. By the way, the last time a musical won best picture was "Chicago" and as next year's show is being prepped, its producers were involved in that film. Does that matter? Nope. But it makes a nice sidebar.
One last note, there is another presidential performance that may get overlooked come award time, but FDR gets film treatment, too. Bill Murray's performance as FDR has generated buzz in the past in "Hyde Park on the Hudson." Can a marketing campaign help launch him into the race?
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