by Josh May
Movie going is a widely observed tradition amongst many families and friends over the holidays, while the studios roll out major releases and Oscar bait.
Interestingly enough, this season’s box office was dominated by two films: Frozen and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, released during Thanksgiving and the first half of December, respectively. It seems that with Frozen, film audiences could not “Let It Go,” judging by the film’s consistent performance over the holidays and its more than $300 million domestic gross, currently making it the fourth-highest grossing film of 2013.
Peter Jackson’s The Desolation of Smaug managed to maintain steady audience intrigue during the holidays, leading it to emerge the victor of this season by maintaining the No. 1 position the week before Christmas and the week after.
While both films dominated the box office, other major releases hit the ground running not too far behind, most notably the “kind of a big deal” Anchorman 2 starring Will Ferrell, and the critical favorite, American Hustle, the latter of which is now up for 10 Oscars, a fact which is sure to draw more audience members. (That, and it features Jennifer Lawrence in one of her best roles to date, who can resist?)
Other releases charmed audiences, such as Saving Mr. Banks, featuring the always brilliant Emma Thompson as Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers and Tom Hanks as Walt Disney. Another big holiday hit was Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street, featuring Golden Globe winner and Oscar nominee Leonardo DiCaprio in what is to be his last film for a little while as he flies around the world promoting environmentalist activism.
Rounding out the top performers at this holiday season’s box office is the second Hunger Games film, Catching Fire. Over the period, Catching Fire still managed to hold onto a moderate audience, who in turn helped make it the top-grossing film of 2013, edging out the early summer release Iron Man 3. Wish you had made it to the theaters during break to see any of the films listed above (with the obvious exception of Iron Man 3)? You’re in luck! Many, if not all, of these films are still playing the metro Jackson area. For more information about the box office hits of the holiday season, visit boxofficemojo.com.