Despite middling reviews and numerous complaints about Peter Jackson’s decision to shoot in 48FPS, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey emerged triumphant at the box office over the weekend, proving that people don’t care what the critics have to say, they just want to see Gollum saying things again. The film brought in a whopping $84.8 million in its three-day opening in the US, making it the biggest December opening ever. In comparison, Rise of the Guardians, which came in 2nd place, pulled in just $7.4 million.
That also means that The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey grossed even more than The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King did back in 2003, surpassing the $72.7 million that the third and final entry in that trilogy brought in for its opening. The worldwide gross for the first in this new trilogy of furry-footed proportions, then, stands at a massive $223 million, according to Warner Bros., who are probably laughing their asses off about the fact that there’s still two more installments to go. This also means that the film has made back its entire budget in the first four days of release (estimated at $150 million).
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey stars Martin Freeman as pint-sized hero Bilbo Baggins, who is persuaded into joining a fellowship of dwarves who seek to reclaim their treasure from the evil dragon, Smaug, who has taken up residence within the confines of their mountain city. Bilbo is joined on his adventure by Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellen, who reprises his role from Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy), and encounters a whole host of familiar characters such as Saruman (Christopher Lee) and Elrond (Hugo Weaving), who’ve been creatively shoe-horned in by Peter Jackson.
At this rate, anyhow, this trilogy is looking to be even more financially successful than The Lord of the Rings ventures, especially since these movies remain somewhat critic-proof and we just want to see Gollum saying things again.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is out everywhere and co-stars Elijah Wood, Cate Blanchett, Richard Armitage, James Nesbitt, Ian Holm and Andy Serkis.