Daddy's Home, Paramount Pictures

Daddy’s Home, Paramount Pictures

APEX Insight: Crossing the $1B mark worldwide in just 12 days, Star Wars: The Force Awakens hangs onto the top spot at the B.O. for the second straight week with a truly epic $153.5M

People expected Star Wars: The Force Awakens to be big, but not even Maz Kanata herself could not have predicted just how huge the Force Awakens juggernaut would become after just 12 days in theaters. And though the film had the largest second weekend of all-time over the Christmas holiday and has smashed another record 36 (and counting) B.O. records to date, the epic battle between darkness and light left plenty of room for a host of new releases to make their mark this weekend as well.

Opening in second place with a higher-than-expected $38.8 million was another movie about epic battles, was the Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg dad vs. stepdad comedy Daddy’s Home. Co-written and directed by Sean Anders (the madman behind such raunchy comedy classics as the Horrible Bosses franchise and We’re The Millers) Home is the first bigscreen outing for Farrell and Wahlberg since they teamed up for the 2010’s buddy comedy The Other Guys. And judging by the hilariously-profane online trailer, Home looks like more of the same stupid-comedy awesomeness we’ve come to expect for this team. In other words, bring it on, daddies!

Joy, Fox

Joy, Fox

Also opening well in third place with a solid $17.5 million was Oscar-nominated writer-director David O. Russell’s Joy. Starring Russell regulars like Robert DeNiro, Bradley Cooper and Elizabeth Rohm, Joy is anchored by a killer lead performance by Oscar-winner Jennifer Lawrence as Joy. Loosely based on the real-life rags-to-riches tale of celebrated QVC inventor/entrepreneur Joy Mangano, Joy was recently nominated for two Golden Globes and looks likely to clean up (using one of Mangano’s trademark Miracle Mops, of course) this award season and beyond. So, keep an eye on this one!

Concussion, Sony

Concussion, Sony

Also making waves this award season is the hard-hitting Will Smith drama Concussion, which finished in sixth place with $11 million. Based on the true story of Dr. Bennett Omalu’s efforts to share his groundbreaking research on the brain damage suffered by pro football players with the world, Concussion was directed by Parkland writer-director Peter Landesman. Also starring Oscar-nominees Alec Baldwin, Albert Brooks and UK sensation Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Belle, Beyond the Lights) as Omalu’s wife Prema Mutiso, Concussion looks like another serious contender for some award-season love this year, so, stay tuned.

And finally, I wanted to take a minute to let you know that this is my final APEX Hollywood Shortlist. Many thanks to the APEX Media team for allowing me to bring you all this box office craziness every week over the past year and thanks also to all of you for reading. It’s been an amazing ride. See you at the movies!

Weekend Box Office Estimates: December 25–27, 2015

Title/Studio Weekend/Total Gross
1. Star Wars: The Force Awakens/Disney $153.5M/$544.5M
2. Daddy’s Home/Paramount $38.8M
3. Joy/Fox $17.5M
4. Sisters/Universal $13.8M/$37.1M
5. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip/Fox $12.7M/$39.3M
6. Concussion/Sony $11M
7. The Big Short/Paramount $10.5M/$16M
8. Point Break/Warner Bros. $10.2M
9. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2/Lionsgate $5.3M/$264.6M
10. Creed/Warner Bros. $4.6M/$96.3M