It was another big weekend for Tom Cruise and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol as the movie once again grabbed the top spot with $31.3 million, bringing the movies domestic haul to just over $134.1 million. The $100 million mark also marked the first movie starring Tom Cruise to reach that level since 2006's Mission Impossible III.
The movie debuted during the last weekend of 2011, during a time when Hollywood profits had slipped by 3.4% year-over-year, taking in $10.22 billion for the year.
According to Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian:
"This week was a pleasant surprise," and "Last week, we were really pretty gloom and doom, but this final push at the end of the year was stronger than expected. It's a good way to head into 2012, with at least a little bit of momentum at the box office."
It's important to remember that the prior year was also buoyed by the massive success of Avatar which took in more than $2 billion worldwide or approximately a 20% equivalent of this years overall gross market.
2012 should be shaping up to be a better year as massive franchise movies are set to arrive including The Dark Knight Rises, The Amazing Spider-Man, The Avengers and Madagascar among others. If the box office needs a big boost towards the end of the year Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," will debut in December 2012.
Falling behind M.I. this past weekend was Robert Downey Jr.'s "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows," which raked in $22.1 million for a domestic total of $132.1 million followed by "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked" which took in $18.3 million for a $94.6 million domestic haul.
Here are the Top 10 grossing movies at the box office for the weekend:
1. "Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol," $31.3 million.
2. "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows," $22.1 million.
3. "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked," $18.3 million.
4. "War Horse," $16.9 million.
5. "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo," $16.3 million.
6. "We Bought a Zoo," $14.3 million.
7. "The Adventures of Tintin," $12 million.
8. "New Year's Eve," $6.7 million.
9. "The Darkest Hour," $4.3 million.
10. "The Descendants," $3.7 million.
Do any of the weekends top earners surprise you.