Buoyed by its Golden Globes win, ‘1917' comes in strong at the box office

Dean-Charles Chapman, left, and George MacKay in a scene from Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment's "1917."
(François Duhamel)

Golden Globes best picture drama winner ‘1917' comes in above expectations, while awards hopeful ‘Just Mercy’ is a hit with audiences and critics.

Boosted by its Golden Globes best picture win, Universal and Dreamworks’ “1917" unseated Disney’s “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” from the top spot at the box office after three weeks of dominance, adding an unprecedented $36.5 million in its third weekend for a cumulative $39.2 million.

The $90-million historical battlefield drama from director Sam Mendes expanded into wide release over the weekend after winning best picture, drama and best director awards at last weekend’s ceremony. It was anticipated to earn $20 million to $25 million. Globally the film has earned $60.4 million.

Starring George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman (“Game of Thrones”), the World War I picture was positively received by audiences and critics with an A-minus CinemaScore and a 90% “fresh” rating on review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes.

In second place, “Star Wars” added $15.1 million in its fourth weekend for a cumulative $478.2 million. The film has collected $989.6 million in worldwide receipts and stands poised to become Disney’s seventh 2019 release to cross the billion-dollar milestone.


At No. 3, Sony’s “Jumanji: The Next Level” added $14 million in its fifth weekend for a cumulative $257.1 million.

Paramount’s “Like a Boss” opened with $10 million in a virtual dead heat for fourth place with Warner Bros.’ “Just Mercy.”

The $29-million Tiffany Haddish and Rose Byrne comedy “Boss” stars the pair as best friends and co-owners of an up-and-coming makeup company forced to choose between brand integrity and a sudden windfall after being approached by a wealthy investor (Salma Hayek).

It earned a mixed reception, with a B CinemaScore and harsher reaction from critics with a 21% “rotten” rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

“Just Mercy” added 2,371 locations (up from four last weekend) and $10 million in its third weekend for a cumulative $10.4 million.

Starring Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx, the social justice drama could garner Foxx an Oscar nod on Monday for playing a wrongfully convicted inmate in the adaptation of Bryan Stevenson’s memoir.

It was positively received, with an A-plus CinemaScore and an 82% “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

At No. 6, Sony’s “Little Women” added $7.7 million in its third weekend for a cumulative $74 million.

In seventh place, Fox’s “Underwater” flopped with $7 million.

The $80-million sci-fi feature stars Kristen Stewart as an aquatic researcher plagued by a mysterious creature miles below the ocean’s surface. It was poorly received with a C CinemaScore and a 53% “rotten” rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

At No. 8, Disney’s “Frozen 2" added $5.8 million in its eighth weekend for a cumulative $459.4 million.

In ninth place, Lionsgate’s “Knives Out” added $5.7 million in its seventh weekend for a cumulative $139.6 million.

Rounding out the top 10, Fox’s “Spies in Disguise” added $5.1 million in its third weekend for a cumulative $54.6 million.

Sony’s “The Grudge” dropped out of the top 10 in its second weekend, adding $3.5 million (a 69% drop) for a cumulative $17.9 million.

In limited release, Neon’s “Clemency” expanded into 10 locations in its third weekend (up from nine last weekend) to $13,450 for a dreary per-screen average of $1,345 and a cumulative $101,847.

Amazon Studios opened “Les Misérables” in four locations to $24,414 for a per-screen average of $6,103.

In advance of its North American debut next weekend, Universal’s “Dolittle” reboot opened internationally in four territories to $8.1 million. Reemerging Miramax’s “The Gentlemen,” which STX opens domestically on Jan. 24, earned $4 million this weekend across three markets for a cumulative $14.2 million.

This week, Sony‘s highly anticipated “Bad Boys for Life” also opens. In limited release, Epic Pictures debuts “The Wave.”