'The Revenant' Weathers Snow Storm While Weekend's Newcomers Perform as Expected
With a blizzard blanketing the East Coast, the weekend's box office was down 29.8% compared to last year. How much of that percentage should be attributed to the snowstorm and how much is due to the fact American Sniper was tearing up the box office last year is difficult to decipher. In all, the snow's effect was certainly noticeable when looking at the weekend's top two recent holdovers as The Revenant scored the top spot despite coming up a bit short of expectations while Ride Along 2 suffered a massive second weekend drop.

Meanwhile the weekend's three new wide releases, led by Dirty Grandpa, all performed as expected and Star Wars: The Force Awakens held strong with a second place finish, inching even closer to $900 million domestically.

Living up to its lead character's struggle, The Revenant fought the bitter cold, scoring the #1 spot in its fifth weekend in overall release and third weekend in wide release with $16 million. That's a 49.6% drop from last weekend, pushing the film over $119 million domestically. It is now Leonardo DiCaprio's Leonardo DiCaprio, surpassing The Wolf of Wall Street's $116 million and looking as it may finish his fifth highest grossing, ahead of the $144 million The Great Gatsby brought in in 2013.

As it stands, The Revenant is the third highest grossing of 2015's Best Picture nominees. If the weekend's weather did have a significant impact on its overall performance, it could make up some major ground next weekend and push hard toward topping Mad Max: Fury Road's $153.6 million. Either way, it should be noted Tom Hardy stars in both flicks and it would seem any time he teams with DiCaprio they deliver in impressive fashion.

Last weekend's number one film, Ride Along 2, took a bit of a nosedive, plummeting 64.7% to third place with $12.4 million. Next weekend sees the release of Fifty Shades of Black, giving audiences another new comedy to seek out, which would mean if the snow had any impact on Ride Along 2's weekend performance it's a little less likely to make that up next week.

The first Ride Along dropped only 48.7% in its second weekend and, for the sake of comparison, the sequel is performing closer to another Tim Story-directed Kevin Hart sequel, Think Like a Man Too. The 2014 sequel to 2012's Think Like a Man dropped 64.7% in its second weekend.

As already noted, Star Wars held on well in its sixth weekend in release bringing in $14 million, adding to its record-setting domestic cume, which is now over $879 million. Topping $900 million domestically is the next milestone the film seeks to reach and it looks as if it could happen by next weekend at the latest.

The first of the weekend's newcomers on the chart is Lionsgate's R-rated comedy Dirty Grandpa starring Robert De Niro and Zac Efron. The flick opened with $11.1 million and a "B" CinemaScore from opening day audiences. Like all of this weekend's new releases, that's pretty much right on target making it difficult to assume the weekend's weather played much of a role in its performance.

Budgeted at a mere $10 million, STX's The Boy brought in $10.7 million and a "B-" CinemaScore. If it's any indication of how it may perform overall, Sinister 2 opened with $10.5 million last year along with a "B-" CinemaScore and finished its run with $27.7 million. Look for The Boy to finish at or a bit below that mark.

Finishing just outside the top five is the weekend's final new wide release, the young adult adaptation The 5th Wave. Budgeted at $38 million, the PG-13 sci-fi thriller generated $10.3 million this weekend and also scored a "B-" CinemaScore. Original intention was for this to serve as a franchise starter, but with such a low domestic opening that seems unlikely. It did, however, expand internationally, adding another 32 markets and bringing in $15.9 million overseas, bringing its international cume to $27.4 million from 55 total markets.

Michael Bay's 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi added 528 theaters this weekend and brought in $9 million for a 39.8% second weekend drop. The film has now grossed $32.7 million in its first ten days in release.

Daddy's Home added another $4.9 million as its cume is now over $138 million, Norm of the North dropped 44.1% in its second weekend and The Big Short rounds out the top ten with $3.1 million as the Oscar contender once again enjoyed a small drop.

Speaking of Oscar contenders, Room added 569 theaters this weekend and enjoyed its biggest weekend yet. playing in 862 theaters the Brie Larson starrer brought in $1.3 million, bringing its domestic cume just shy of $8 million.

Just ahead of Room on the overall weekend chart is Brooklyn, which added 275 theaters and brought in $1.7 million in its twelfth weekend in release. Spotlight dropped only 16.5% bringing in $1.27 million and Bridge of Spies added 350 theaters and jumped 72% from last weekend with $341k.

On the limited side of things, Ip Man 3 performed quite well in 103 theaters, tallying $784,839 despite losing theaters in New York due to the snowstorm. Well Go plans on adding another 15-20 markets next weekend.

The massive Chinese hit Monster Hunt finally landed stateside and brought in $21,074 from 45 theaters, several of which were on the East Coast.

Finally, the snowstorm certainly had an impact on Big World Pictures' release of Aferim!. The film was playing in five theaters in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco, and while New York screenings were strong on Friday, theater closures beginning after matinee screenings on Saturday didn't help matters. Ultimately, the film brought in $15,892 this weekend.

Next weekend sees the wide release of Kung Fu Panda 3 (which brought in $6.3 million in sneak previews in China on Saturday) into approximately 3,900 theaters, The Finest Hours into about 3,000 theaters and Fifty Shades of Black will open in 2,150+ theaters.

On a smaller scale, the Weinstein Co. will bring Natalie Portman's Jane Got a Gun to approximately 550 theaters, the 2016 Oscar nominated short films will begin playing in about 140 theaters and UTV will bring Saala Khadoos to approximately 50 theaters.

You can browse this weekend's full chart here and we'll have weekend actuals on Monday afternoon.

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