January 19, 2015 by Paul Curtin
2015 is off to a great start for movies with Clint Eastwood and Bradly Cooper’s R-rated war drama already setting records. The story of the most lethal sniper in U.S. history had a limited release at the end of 2014 and positive word of mouth in addition to various award nominations helped it blow away early forecasts and pull in an estimated $89.5 million over the weekend.
American Sniper‘s success at the box office comes as a total shock considering its opening ranks among other recent superhero films without the need for a PG-13 rating or the extra ticket prices of 3D. To put it into perspective, Sniper‘s opening was double that of the previous January opening weekend record held by 2014’s Ride Along ($41.5 million).
Speaking of the previous January record-holder, Kevin Hart’s latest movie, The Wedding Ringer, opened in second place over the weekend with a solid $20 million. While the animated children’s bear movie, Paddington, trailed closely behind opening at $19 million.
Here are the numbers for the top five of the domestic box office over the weekend via BOM:
- American Sniper— Weekend Gross: $89.5 million — Total Gross: $92.9 million (new)
- The Wedding Ringer — Weekend Gross: $20.6 million — Total Gross: $20.6 million (new)
- Paddington— Weekend Gross: $18.9 million — Total Gross: $18.9 million (new)
- Taken 3 — Weekend Gross: $14.6 million — Total Gross: $63.4 million (#1 last week)
- Selma — Weekend Gross: $8.8 million — Total Gross: $26.5 million (#2 last week)