Weekend Box Office: Holmes and Chipmunks Get Christmas Coal
'Tis the season to see sequels. But this season the sequels aren't being seen by very many. Hollywood's Christmas 2011 continues to disappoint at the box office.
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows took first place this weekend, but there wasn't much to celebrate. With only $40 million it dropped well below the $62 million its predecessor banked two Christmases ago. While the movie is in no danger of losing money over the long haul, such a large drop in interest could flag an end to the fledgling franchise.
Alvin and company fared even worse. Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-wrecked took in just $23 million, dropping to near half the $44 million and $48 million debuts enjoyed by the first two in the series. That might also spell a direct-to-DVD future for any further sequels with the singing CG rodents, but if more big screen releases get the green light it wouldn't be the first time a franchise declining in both cash flow and quality lived well past its prime (here's looking at you Scary Movie).
The one sequel to show some signs of success was Mission:Impossible - Ghost Protocol. Instead of a massive holiday release Paramount launched the fourth M:I flick in less than 500 IMAX theaters, giving more committed fans a chance to shell out for the higher ticket prices and give word-of-mouth the chance to boost interest before the movie gets lost in next week's flood of Christmas-time new releases.
Young Adult jumped from 18th place to 7th on the back of a widened release, but that wasn't enough to declare it a financial success. With only $4 million in sales so far it's a long ways from recovering its simple $12 million price tag.
For the full weekend top ten numbers, take a look at the chart below:
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