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Box office report: Audiences gobble up 'Breaking Dawn,' 'Skyfall,' and 'Lincoln' over record Thanksgiving weekend

Hollywood has reason to give thanks this year. Boosted by a trio of new releases and a veritable cornucopia of well-performing holdovers, the Thanksgiving box office reached an all-time high this year. Theaters sold an estimated $295 million worth of tickets in five days, outdoing the Thanksgiving record of $273 million set in 2009.

As expected, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 led the way with $43.1 million over the regular weekend frame (a 70 percent drop from its $141.1 million debut), and a huge $64.0 million over the Wednesday-to-Sunday period. After ten days, Breaking Dawn – Part 2 has earned $227.0 million — slightly more than the $220.8 million that Breaking Dawn – Part 1 had earned at the same point in its run, but slightly behind New Moon‘s $230.9 million take at the 10-day mark. Internationally, Breaking Dawn – Part 2 has already earned $350.8 million, which brings its worldwide total to $577.7 million. Like its predecessor, the $120 million Summit production should finish just below $300 million domestically and between $700 and $800 million worldwide when all is said and done.  READ FULL STORY

Box office update: 'Breaking Dawn' keeps lead on Wednesday with $12.8 million

This Thanksgiving, Americans were feasting on turkey, mashed potatoes… and blood. After opening strong with $141.1 million last weekend, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2 topped the box office charts with $12.8 million on Wednesday, according to early estimates. The film’s predecessors in the franchise, New Moon and Breaking Dawn – Part 1, each opened on the weekend before Thanksgiving, falling by 54 and 55 percent respectively over the five-day frames that followed. And Breaking Dawn – Part 2 will likely fall by a similar amount down to $64 million by the end of the 5-day holiday weekend.

Meanwhile, the audience for Skyfall keeps growing: the Bond film earned $7.4 million on Wednesday, putting it on target for $48.5 million by the end of the five-day weekend. That’s a substantial bump up from last weekend’s $41.1 million, and by Sunday evening, Skyfall will have over $200 million total. READ FULL STORY

Box office preview: 'Breaking Dawn' headed for Thanksgiving win, while newcomers hope to avoid turkey status

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 has a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. Not only did the vampire franchise’s finale earn a terrific $141.1 million in its opening weekend, but it’s headed to an easy second weekend win at the box office — despite the arrival of three big-budget newcomers: Rise of the Guardians, Life of Pi, and Red Dawn.

Here’s how the lucrative five-day weekend (new releases hit theaters on Wednesday, not Friday, this week) might play out: READ FULL STORY

'Red Dawn' clip: Chris Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson set trap for pesky invading North Koreans -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

In Red Dawn, our country contends with a surprise invasion by North Korea, who infiltrate and occupy a town in Washington state. Only a rag-tag group of teenagers — including Chris Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, and Josh Peck — have escaped to stop them. (The film is a remake of the 1984 Cold War cult favorite starring Patrick Swayze, Charlie Sheen, Lea Thompson, and Jennifer Grey, in which the invading force was from the Soviet Union.)

In this exclusive clip from the film, Adrianne Palicki (Friday Night Lights) lures several North Korean soldiers into a clever trap set by her compatriots. Check it out below:  READ FULL STORY

Fantastic Fest: Nostalgia abounds at world premiere of 'Red Dawn'

Fantastic Fest wrapped up last night in Austin, Texas, with Alamo Drafthouse founder Tim League dressed up as North Korean strongman Kim Jong-Il to introduce the world premiere of Red Dawn (in theaters, Nov. 21). The general vibe in the room was one of pleasant surprise, as expectations may have been low for the long-delayed, post-production Photoshopped remake of the 1984 American invasion classic. Quick plot refresher: Wolverines good! Russians bad! In the remake, which stars a pre-Thor Chris Hemsworth (who gives good Swayze) and Josh Hutcherson, North Koreans are the new bad guys.

Co-stars Adrianne Palicki (Friday Night Lights homegirl) and Josh Peck (Drake & Josh) were on hand for a Q&A after the film. When asked about his training regimen, Peck, who plays Hemsworth’s kid brother, described his grueling process: “It started in Hebrew school…” He then went on to explain how he and Hemsworth bonded in the gym. “Not only was he getting ready for Red Dawn and wanted to be in peak shape but then he had Thor coming soon after, so he was on such a regimen” said the 25-year-old actor. “And I was very new to the idea of a pushup and any sort of calisthenics so I think we bonded over body issues.” On working out with Navy Seals: “I was probably the only person ever to well up during a back squat.”

Peck also acknowledged that he and Hemsworth couldn’t look less like brothers. I love this guy.

After the movie League invited everyone to join him at the American Legion for a prison camp-themed closing night party where a free tattoo artist would be on hand. “Applying actual ink with needles,” he promised. “Prison tattoos are free at Fantastic Fest.” You don’t get that kind of action in Toronto, man.

Read more:
Red Dawn preview
‘Red Dawn’ trailer: Peeta and Gale’s brother join forces to repel [blank] invasion
Austin’s Fantastic Fest adds ‘Sinister,’ ‘Looper,’ and Halloween haunted house doc ‘The American Scream’ to lineup

'Red Dawn' trailer: Peeta and Gale's brother join forces to repel [blank] invasion

In 1984, America’s cold war with the Soviet Union was heating up again. Soviet troops were in Afghanistan, the countries had traded petty Olympic boycotts, and President Ronald Reagan was calling the Soviet Union an “evil empire.” It was the perfect time for Red Dawn, an action adventure that pitted wholesome American teenagers (Patrick Swayze, C. Thomas Howell, Lea Thompson) against a Soviet/Cuban invasion of the United States. Obviously, we won. (The Berlin Wall’s fall was inevitable after the Wolverines’ heroic victory.)

The times have certainly changed, but Red Dawn is back, with Chris Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson taking to the streets to beat back the invaders. They are still the Wolverines, and the trailer includes a favorite scene from the original where the kids ambush some enemy soldiers by popping out of covered trenches. But who are they fighting again? Russians? Nope. Cubans? Uh-uh. Chinese! Holy iPods, bite your tongue! Um, North Koreans? Bingo! The North Koreans are coming! The North Koreans are coming! And this time, it is no police action!! READ FULL STORY

'Red Dawn' first look: Thor and Peeta fight some Commies -- PHOTOS

The first images of Red Dawn — the remake of John Milius’ 1984 nationalistic ode to the Second Amendment and finally kicking the USSR out of Colorado — have hit the ‘net after a long, long wait. The film had been held back for years due to MGM’s financial difficulties, and in the meantime its primary villains were given a quick makeover, switching from the Chinese to a country where nobody buys movie tickets: North Korea. Also in the meantime, stars like Chris Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson made it big with roles in huge franchises.

“I saw it the other day and I was like, ‘Oh, right, I made this!'” joked Hemsworth to EW last week, talking about making the film before he had much experience in Hollywood. “It had this school camp feel. We were all from somewhere else and we were all excited about the adventure we were about to go on. It was like going to a new school, it’s just that at this school, we were shooting at people.”

Check out the photos of Hemsworth, Hutcherson, and co-star Josh Peck below:  READ FULL STORY

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