Going into this weekend, everyone with an eye on the box office expected to be watching a showdown between The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 and The Good Dinosaur. What no one saw coming was an unexpectedly strong showing from the Christmas-themed horror movie Krampus, which opened in second place...while the latest from Pixar took a shocking drop.

Film Weekend Per Screen
1 The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 $18,600,000 (-64%) $4,552 $227,112,000
2 Krampus $16,020,000 (-47%) $5,520 $16,020,000
3 Creed $15,540,000 (-47%) $4,539 $65,137,000
4 The Good Dinosaur $15,512,000 (-60%) $4,138 $75,951,000
5 Spectre $5,425,000 (-57%)
$1,910 $184,520,000
6 The Night Before $4,920,000 (-41%) $1,761 $31,988,000
7 The Peanuts Movie $3,525,000 (-63%) $1,208 $121,437,000
8 Spotlight $2,926,000 (-33%) $2,987 $16,632,000
9 Brooklyn $2,430,000 (-38%) $2,682 $11,210,000
10 Secret in Their Eyes $1,950,000 (-55%) $908 $17,241,000

 

Let’s start with the top, where we might as well just copy and paste from the previous edition of the Weekend Box Office Report. Mockingjay – Part 2 topped the box office for the third weekend in a row, grossing $18 million, but it’s still diminishing returns at this point. At this rate, the film will be lucky to hit $300 million and even if it does, it’ll fall far short of its predecessor’s box office, which fell far short of the first two movies in the series. Let’s not kid ourselves: this movie is still a hit, but it’s a hit with a big asterisk next to it. When you actually look at the nitty-gritty details, it’s a disappointment.

That leads us straight into Krampus, which chased Katniss Everdeen with a solid $16 million. With a reported budget of only $15 million, the latest holiday-themed horror movie from director Michael Dougherty will ultimately be profitable, even if it takes the patented second weekend horror movie plummet. Then again, the seasonal theme may give this one stronger legs than the typical horror movie. In any case, it’s already infinitely more successful than Dougherty’s under-seen gem Trick ’r Treat, which couldn’t even secure a theatrical release back in 2007.

In third place, Creed continued defying the odds, taking in $15 million for a $65 million total. The critically adored crowd-pleaser will surpass the $70 million gross of 2006’s Rocky Balboa in a few days and should end up with a final gross somewhere north of $100 million. That’s great for the seventh film in any series. That’s great for a modestly-budgeted sports drama. That’s great for just about everyone involved.

And that brings us to The Good Dinosaur, which tumbled 60 percent from its opening weekend, which was already one of the lower openings for a Pixar movie. With only $15 million in its second weekend and a current total of $75 million, there’s a strong chance that this will ultimately be the lowest-grossing Pixar movie in years (if not ever). Coming off the heels of Inside Out, which is receiving serious Oscar attention and is sitting pretty as the third highest-grossing movie of 2015, this is rough. What went wrong here? Can it recover? We’ll have to sort through this in the weeks ahead, just in case The Good Dinosaur grows some legs.

In fifth place, Spectre began to sputter out, grossing $5 million for a $184 million total. The 24th James Bond movie should reach $200 million, but it won’t go far beyond that. In other words: those Skyfall numbers aren’t happening. The international grosses are still working on making this a $1 billion movie (and it’s still the second highest-grossing Bond movie in the United States), but there is certainly a tinge of disappointment here.

In the back half of the top 10, The Night Before continued its steady climb to sleeper hit status and The Peanuts Movie has started its quiet exit from theaters as a decently-sized hit. Behind them, Oscar contenders Spotlight and Brooklyn continued doing okay business in limited release — neither of them are going to be hits yet, although awards attention may change that.