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Star Wars tops New Year's box office in North America

China Daily | Updated: 2018-01-03 08:55

LOS ANGELES - Disney and LucasFilm's Star Wars: The Last Jedi has cleared the $1 billion milestone in worldwide grosses in less than three weeks.

The movie pulled in $120.4 million globally on the New Year's weekend, with $52.4 million at 4,232 domestic venues and $68 million internationally during the Friday-Sunday period.

The Last Jedi is now the eighth highest-grossing domestic movie of all time with $517.1 million - only $15 million behind last year's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story in the seventh spot. On the worldwide chart, it's now 24th with $1.04 billion, edging Universal-Illumination's Despicable Me 3. The tentpole's international total, currently at $523.2 million, will see a significant jolt when it opens on Friday in China, its final market.

The eighth installment in the Star Wars saga has topped another release of Disney, Beauty and the Beast, which grossed around $504 million, for the top spot among 2017 releases in North America. It was also the No 3 release of 2017 globally and the 24th of all time.

"Hollywood will ironically embrace a 2.3 percent downturn in North American box office revenues after a rollercoaster of a year that had many wondering if we would even hit the $11 billion mark," said senior movie analyst Paul Dergarabedian at ComScore.

"2018 looks particularly strong, but so does every year on paper, so the big blockbusters will have to deliver the goods with fresh and innovative filmmaking to draw audiences out of their homes and out to the multiplex," he told Xinhua.

Sony's action adventure comedy film Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was not far behind in second place this weekend. It took in an estimated $50.57 million through Sunday, pushing its total to $169.8 million in North America.

Directed by Jake Kasdan and starring Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart and Karen Gillan, the sequel to 1995's Jumanji follows four teenagers who are transported into the video game world of Jumanji and must work together to beat the game in order to return to the real world.

Universal's musical comedy film Pitch Perfect 3 came in third with an estimated $17.78 million in its second weekend. The third and final film in the Pitch Perfect trilogy, the film was directed by Trish Sie and follows the Bellas, now graduated from college, reuniting for one final performance in an overseas USO tour.

Xinhua - Reuters

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