With no new wide releases in this traditionally slow post-Thanksgiving weekend, “Mockingjay” domination continued.
“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1” topped the U.S. box office on Friday with $6.6 million. The penultimate installment in the hit franchise is headed for its third consecutive win with $22 million — twice as much as this weekend’s runner-up, “The Penguins of Madagascar.”
If estimates hold, “Mockingjay” will finish the weekend with a 17-day U.S. total of $258 million-plus, or 23% below the 17-day total for “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” at the same point last year. It’s unlikely that the movie will reach “Catching Fire’s” $424.7 million cume.
However, the film is on par with the third-weekend earnings of “Catching Fire.”
Despite its under-performance compared to the previous installments, “Mockingjay” will overtake “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” which hauled in $259.8 million, by Monday as the year’s second-highest grossing film. “The Guardians of the Galaxy” still stands atop with $332 million.
The YA film adaptation will reach another milestone at the international box office, where it stands to make at least $30 million this weekend to cross the $300 million mark. The pic still hasn’t opened in China, so it could ultimately match “Catching Fire’s” $440.2 million international take.
Per usual, holdovers controlled the box office this post-Thanksgiving weekend. The second weekend of “Frozen” won the same weekend last year with $31 million, followed by the third frame of “Catching Fire.”
Fox and DreamWorks’ second weekend of “Penguins” came in a distant third with $2.4 million on Friday, but will waddle its way to second place by Sunday. The spinoff is eyeing $11 million — a 57% drop — which will raise its cume to almost $49.5 million.
Another sequel, Warner Bros.’ “Horrible Bosses 2,” came in second on Friday in its second weekend with $2.7 million. The raunchy comedy stands to earn between $8 million and $9 million this weekend for a third-place finish and 12-day cume of $36 million.
The pair of films rounding out the top five are in their second month at the box office.
Disney’s “Big Hero 6” will edge out Paramount’s “Interstellar” for the fourth slot this weekend, although it trailed behind on Friday. The animated action-adventure made $1.8 million on Friday en route to $8 million, raising its domestic take to $177 million.
Meanwhile, Christopher Nolan’s space epic took in $2.2 million on its way to a weekend north of $7 million. The drama will likely earn $158 million by Sunday.
“The Pyramid” is the one new release this weekend. Fox’s micro-budget, found-footage horror film brought in $458,000 from 589 locations on Friday and will likely earn $1 million this weekend.
Open Road’s thriller “Nightcrawler” was right behind in 12th place after doubling its screen count to 1,257 following a Halloween launch. The Jake Gyllenhaal-starrer made $309,996 on Friday and also eyes a million dollars.