Though coming in behind the last 2 films in the trilogy, J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker easily beat the competition with a huge weekend launch of $175.5-M at the North American box office and $373.5-M globally.
Domestically, the movie scored the 3rd-biggest December debut of all time behind Abrams’ Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2015 ($248-M) and Rian Johnson’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi in 2017 ($220-M).
Overseas, the latest Star Wars film opened to $198-M from 52 territories, trailing the last 2 movies in like-for-like markets.
Potential challenges facing Rise of Skywalker include decidedly mixed reviews and a B+ CinemaScore. Also, it is the first Star Wars pic made by Lucasfilm and Disney not to earn an A or A- from audiences. Exit scores on PostTrak are more promising.
Tom Hooper’s Christmas event movie Cats scratched in its debut with $6.5-M after landing a C+ CinemaScore and getting savaged by critics.
From Universal and Working Title, the $100-M PG-rated pic hopes to make up ground in the coming days as families become available.
Cats came in # 4 behind holdovers Jumanji: The Next Level and Frozen 2.
Sony’s Jumanji 2 grossed a sturdy $26.1-M in its 2nd outing to pass the $100 -M threshold domestically, and $312 million globally.
Frozen 2 took in $12.3-M domestically and another $31.6 -M overseas for a global take of $1.103-B.
Lionsgate’s Bombshell came in behind expectations in its nationwide expansion with $5.1-M in North America. The Fox News drama came #6 behind fellow Lionsgate release Knives Out, which grossed $6.1-M in its 4th weekend for a global haul of $185.6-M.
Of the 3 new movies, Bombshell boasts the best Rotten Tomatoes score at 65% followed by 57% for Star Wars and 19% for Cats.
Elsewhere on the Top 10 chart, Fox and Disney’s Ford v Ferrari raced past the $100-M mark domestically for a worldwide haul of $193-M to date.
Have some fun, see a movie this Holiday week.