Box Office: ‘The Imitation Game’ Scores Solidly in Christmas Expansion

Christmas proved bountiful for the Weinstein Co.’s expansion of “The Imitation Game” as the Benedict Cumberbatch thriller took in $3.1 million at 747 U.S. locations.

That was good enough for seventh place during a typically robust Christmas, led by “Unbroken” and “Into the Woods” both topping $15 million.

By adding 713 sites, “The Imitation Game” nearly doubled its four-week total to $6.7 million. It’s also grossed $19.5 million in the U.K., the setting for the tale of World War II code-breaker Alan Turing, since its Nov. 14 release.

The film, directed by Morten Tyldum, with Keira Knightley and Mark Strong also starring, has been gathering awards momentum with five Golden Globe nominations and a trio of SAG nods.

The Weinstein Co. used a similar box office strategy in 2010, when it expanded “The King’s Speech” from 91 to 700 locations on Christmas Day — lifting the U.S. total from $4.2 million to $6.3 million in a single session. “The King’s Speech” went on to gross $135 million in the U.S., along with winning the best picture Oscar.

Another TWC awards hopeful, Tim Burton’s “Big Eyes,” had a rough Christmas Day debut with a 12th place finish with $1.4 million at 1,307 locations. That put “Big Eyes,” starring Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz as Margaret and Walter Keane, on track for a modest $5 million total for the four-day Christmas weekend.

 

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