Playing at 2,654 locations, Texas Chainsaw debuted to an estimated $10.2 million (including $1.15 million from 10 p.m. Thursday and midnight shows). That's about on par with the 2003 Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake ($10.6 million), and noticeably ahead of the 2006 prequel ($7.35 million). Still, it's way below The Devil Inside, which scored $16.8 million on opening day at the exact same time last year. Lionsgate is expecting the movie to be very front-loaded and only wind up with between $21 and $24 million for the weekend.
Django Unchained took second place with $6.2 million, which is off 36 percent from last Friday. After starting behind Les Miserables, Django is now slightly ahead of that movie with over $92.4 million. By the end of the weekend, Django's total should be close to $105 million, and it's definitely still on pace to earn more than Inglourious Basterds ($120.5 million).
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey plummeted 51 percent to $5.23 million on Friday. For the weekend it should end up with around $16 million, and could even score the highest fourth weekend ever for a Lord of the Rings movie ahead of Fellowship of the Ring ($16.2 million).
Les Miserables fell 47 percent to an estimated $4.9 million, which was good for fourth place. The musical has now grossed $92.39 million (just behind Django), and will pass $100 million on Sunday.
Parental Guidance rounded out the Top Five with an estimated $3.13 million, which is down 38 percent from last Friday. To date, the Billy Crystal-Bette Midler family comedy has earned $45.8 million.
A handful of movies made noteworthy expansions on Friday, though results varied significantly. Anti-fracking drama Promised Land moved in to 1,676 locations but earned a paltry $1.31 million; the Matt Damon-John Krasinski movie will barely make it to $4 million for the weekend.
Zero Dark Thirty, on the other hand, had a fantastic expansion: the controversial CIA thriller jumped from five locations to 60 and scored $825,000. That translates to an impressive $13,750 per-theater average. For the weekend, Sony is expecting at least $2.5 million, which would make Zero Dark Thirty the first movie to earn over $2.5 million from less than 100 locations since Black Swan did it in December 2010.
Meanwhile, Not Fade Away was a disaster: the David Chase flick expanded to 565 theaters but earned just $80,000 for a terrible per-theater average of $142. The movie will be lucky to get to $300,000 for the weekend.
Tsunami drama The Impossible also expanded to 572 theaters, but Summit Entertainment is not currently reporting its Friday gross.
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• Forecast: Leatherface Battles Bilbo, Django This Weekend
• Grosses for Friday, January 4, 2013