Box office: Audiences already warm to Disney's 'Frozen'

Walt Disney Pictures' computer-animated 3-D musical “Frozen” likely won’t topple “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” at the holiday box office, but the fairy tale is already drawing big numbers, according to early estimates.

On Wednesday alone, “Frozen” took in more than $15 million. Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen,” the film could take in as much as $70 million over five days in its first weekend in wide release, The Times earlier reported. The tale of two princess sisters, voiced by Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel, was introduced last weekend at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood.

“Frozen” is ahead of the pace set by Disney’s 2010 animated release “Tangled,” which also debuted on Thanksgiving eve. “Tangled” drew more than $11 million on its opening day and brought in a total of $68.7 million for the weekend.

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“Frozen” has opened to strong reviews and currently has an 85% “fresh” rating on the critic aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes. “With a cool, contemporary spin on a fairy-tale classic, a dramatic Nordic landscape animated in splendid storybook style and Broadway vets belting out power ballads, ‘Frozen’ is an icy blast of fun from the very first flake,” the Times’ Betsy Sharkey wrote in her review.

Still, the dominating force at the box office this Thanksgiving will be Lionsgate’s sequel to “The Hunger Games.” The film, starring Jennifer Lawrence and directed by Francis Lawrence, brought in another $20.7 million on Wednesday. In less than one week of domestic release, “Catching Fire” has accrued $207 million.

“Catching Fire” took in more than $158 million last weekend for the best November opening ever. The film was expected to generate ticket sales of around $85 million this weekend.

Also new on Wednesday was the Jason Statham action thriller “Homefront” from Open Road Films. “Homefront” brought in an estimated $1.4 million on its debut day, placing it in fourth place behind “Thor: The Dark World.” Opening in wider release is the Fox family drama "The Book Thief,” which took in about $725,000.

Elsewhere on the charts is Fox Searchlight's “Black Nativity,” the Kasi Lemmons-directed musical adapted from the play by Langston Hughes, which took in an estimated $440,000, and the Weinstein Co.'s British drama "Philomena,” which earned about $377,000.


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