The Force remained strong for ‘Rogue One’ as in just a matter of three weeks the ‘Star Wars’ anthology film has already taken the position of second highest grossing movie of 2016, with $439.1M, falling short of Disney/Pixar’s ‘Finding Dory’, but surpassing ‘Captain America: Civil War’.  Of course all three of these top earners were released by Disney, which is quickly gaining a monopoly on the box office, something that some are critical of.  (Don’t hate the player, as they say.)

At this point, it’s clearly established that the film has wowed both critics and fans, but sadly fate might have nudged things in this film’s favor with the cameo by a young Carrie Fisher/Princess Leia.  But luckily, we know that ‘Episode VIII’ has wrapped completely with Fisher returning as General Organa for one more go-round.  On the other hand, Jimmy Smits plays a larger role in ‘Rogue One’ as her adopted father Viceroy Bail Organa, which is a nice nod to the prequel trilogy which is widely dismissed by die hard fans.

Beyond ‘Star Wars’, there wasn’t much shifting in the Top Five overall.  Check out the numbers below:

  1. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Disney) – $63.6M
  2. Sing (Universal) – $54.8M
  3. Passengers (Sony) – $19.75M
  4. Moana (Disney) – $13.47M
  5. Fences (Paramount) – $13M

The sole newcomer to crack the Top Five was the drama ‘Fences’.

Outside of the Top Five, ‘Arrival’ has now crossed the $150M threshold internationally.  This excellent sleeper has thrived thanks to word-of-mouth, despite the fact that the stars (Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner) aren’t immediate box office draws and the fact that it’s an original concept, not part of an established franchise.  Unfortunately, this film is slated to depart most major outlets soon, so if you want to experience it on the big screen, now is the time.

Expected to go wider in the coming weeks are some smaller films that were released in a few theaters in order to qualify for 2016 awards season, including ‘Hidden Figures’ which only opened in 25 theaters but scored the highest per-screen average of any movie this week, topping even ‘Rogue One’.  Add to that ‘Patriot’s Day’ (seven theaters), ’20th Century Women’ (four theaters), ‘Live By Night’ (four theaters), and ‘A Monster Calls’ (four theaters).

Well, next week ‘Rogue One’ better watch its ass, as ‘Underworld: Blood Wars’ arrives.  Or not.

Source: Deadline