Sam Mendes’ “1917” triumphed at the global box office, generating a solid $56.42 million over the weekend.
The war drama ignited to $21.17 million overseas, where Universal and Amblin Entertainment are splitting distribution. In the U.S., “1917” claimed victory with $36.5 million, enough to dethrone the reigning champ, Disney’s “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.”
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“1917” is set during the height of the First World War and unfolds in real time as two young British soldiers (portrayed by George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman) are tasked with the seemingly impossible mission of delivering a message that will save the lives of 1,600 men. The film took home two Golden Globes Sunday, one for best picture — drama and another for Mendes’ direction. That publicity, combined with its Oscar prospects, are no doubt giving “1917” a box office boost. The film cost $90 million and has pocketed $60 million so far.
Another awards favorite, Greta Gerwig’s “Little Women,” hit an important milestone on the eve of Academy Awards nominations. Sony’s acclaimed adaptation crossed the coveted $100 million mark worldwide with ticket sales currently sitting at $107 million. The movie added another $8.1 million at the international box office, boosting its foreign tally to $33.2 million. “Little Women” continues to over-perform in the United Kingdom, where it has earned $17.2 million.
Sony’s “Jumanji: The Next Level” also reached a big benchmark, surpassing $400 million abroad after collecting $22.6 million this weekend. The action sequel, starring Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart, has made $671 million globally.
Meanwhile, “Rise of Skywalker” is gearing up to become the latest billion-dollar club member since box office receipts reached $990 million this weekend. Directed by J.J. Abrams, the ninth and final chapter in the Skywalker saga has brought in $511.4 million overseas. The tentpole has seen the strongest returns in the U.K. ($71.4 million), Germany ($61.3 million) and Japan ($54.3 million). “Rise of Skywalker” is expected to blow past $1 billion worldwide next week.
Among new releases, Universal’s family friendly film “Dolittle” picked up $8.1 million when it kicked off in four international markets. The film opened in Korea with $6.8 million, Ukraine with $1.1 million and South Africa with $200,000. It launches in the U.S. and most major foreign territories next weekend. Robert Downey Jr. stars as the veterinarian who regularly converses with animals in “Dolittle.” It’ll need to become a huge commercial hit to justify its expensive $175 million price tag.
Rounding out the weekend is “Underwater,” a sci-fi thriller starring Kristen Stewart. The movie picked up $7.1 million from 22 international territories, along with $7 million in the States. That’s a dismal showing for a movie that cost $50 million. Disney is distributing the movie — produced by Chernin Entertainment and financed by TSG — after acquiring it from Fox.
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