Thanksgiving Box Office: ‘Catching Fire,’ ‘Frozen’ Serve Up Holiday Records

Lionsgate sequel scores $110 mil in five days; Disney toon tuner follows, with $93 mil

Hunger Games Catching Fire

Powering up a record-setting Thanksgiving weekend at the movies, Lionsgate’s “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” brought in a whopping chart-topping estimated $110.2 million from Wednesday to Sunday, bringing the film’s Stateside total to $296.5 million. Globally, “Catching Fire” has amassed $573 million.

Meanwhile, providing icing on the … er … pie was Disney’s 3D animated musical “Frozen,” which technically bowed last weekend at a single-screen engagement but expanded nationwide Wednesday, grossing a projected $93 million through Sunday.

SEE ALSO: Film Review: ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’

“Catching Fire” and “Frozen” now have the first and second largest three-day and five-day Thanksgiving grosses, respectively.

From Friday to Sunday, “Catching Fire” estimated $74.5 million, while “Frozen” collected $66.7 million over the three-day frame. (Warner Bros.’ “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” previously held the record for both Thanksgiving tallies.)

“For a company whose foundation is built on animation, an opening like this is really great,” said Disney distribution exec Dave Hollis, who praised the efforts of the filmmakers and the studio’s marketing team.

“You can be very targeted with a message, and the team really stoked the fire without alienating any one particular audience segment,” he added.

“Frozen,” which received a rare ‘A+’ CinemaScore, scored 81% of its opening from families, with a more even split between the genders (females contributed 57% of the gross).

Aside from the holiday’s top-grossing duo, it was a modest weekend for films expanding, including Fox’s “The Book Thief,” which estimated just $6.4 million from 1,234 locations, up from 70 last weekend, as well as openers like Fox Searchlight’s African-American-targeted tuner “Black Nativity,” disappointing with just $5 million at 1,516 Stateside engagements.

SEE ALSO: Film Review: ‘Frozen’

Open Road’s Jason Statham actioner “Homefront” fell in line with expectations, collecting a modest-yet-serviceable $9.8 million from Wednesday to Sunday.

Cracking the top 10 at only 835 locations, the Weinstein Co.’s adult-targeted weeper “Philomena,” toplining Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, estimated $4.6 million in five days, averaging $5,615 per screen. The film also scored a solid ‘A’ CinemaScore rating.

And scoring one of the weakest Thanksgiving openings of all time, FilmDistrict’s thriller remake “Oldboy,” starring Josh Brolin, estimated a dismal $850,000 in five days, though the film bowed at just 583 locations (not technically a wide release).


Film (Weeks in release): 3-day gross*; 5-day gross*; Locations; Per-theater average†; Cume*; Percentage change‡

  1. Catching Fire (2): $74.5; $110.2; 4,163; $26,471; $296.5; -53%
  2. Frozen (2): $66.7; $93.0; 3,742; $24,856; $93.4; +999%
  3. Thor: The Dark World (4): $11.1; $15.5; 3,286; $4,715; -22%
  4. The Best Man Holiday (3): $8.5; $11.1; 1,712; $6,484; $63.4; -32%
  5. Homefront (1): $7.0; $9.8; 2,570; $3,811; $9.8; —
  6. Delivery Man (2): $6.9; $9.6; 3,036; $3,187; -13%
  7. The Book Thief (4): $4.9; $6.4; 1,234; $5,186; $7.9; +704%
  8. Black Nativity (1): $3.9; $5.0; 1,516; $3,298; $5.0; —
  9. Philomena (2): $3.8; $4.6; 835; $5,615; $4.8; +999%
  10. 12 Years a Slave (7): $2.3; $3.0; 1,165; $2,597; $33.1; -19%

*millions of $; †based on 4-day; ‡based on 3-day