"Little Fockers" Debuts At No. 1, But "True Grit" Impresses! 

First, the bad news. According to Hollywood.com, overall revenues this Christmas weekend were down 45% over the same weekend a year ago. But that didn't stop Universal's "Little Fockers" for taking the No. 1 spot.

The third installment of the "Meet the Parents" franchise opened with $34 million for the weekend and $48.3 million since opening Wednesday, December 22nd. So how did it stack up against the other films in the "Parents" franchise?

The first "Meet the Parents" debuted in 2000 with $28.6 million, eventually earning $166.2 million. The sequel, "Meet the Fockers," earned $46.1 million during its opening weekend on December 22 of 2004 becoming the 4th highest grossing film of that year with $279.2 million.

The new entry, "Little Fockers," will probably end up between the first and the second in total domestic gross, but honestly? The threequel was an unnecessary flick, the magic was gone, and everyone, from Ben Stiller to Robert DeNiro all the way to Barbra Streisand and Dustin Hoffman, gave phoned-in performances.

The bright spot this weekend was "True Grit," the Coen brothers' remake of the John Wayne 1969 film. Starring Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin, Barry Pepper, and Hailee Steinfeld, "True Grit" made an impressive debut of $25.6 million for the weekend, and $36.8 million since opening last Wednesday. ("True Grit" movie review, interview with Barry Pepper)

Previous weekend's box-office champ, "Tron: Legacy," fell to No. 3 with $20.1 million. Also starring Bridges, "Tron" is on its way to closing in on the $90 million mark, but still very far from making a profit with a rumored budget of $300 million. Yikes! ("Tron: Legacy" movie review)

"The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader" duked it out with "Yogi Bear" for the No. 4 position, but Aslan eventually triumphed. ("The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader" movie review, interviews with Georgie Henley and Will Poulter)

The Third installment of the "Narnia" franchise earned $10.8 million for the fourth spot, while Warner Bros. "Yogi Bear" followed closely with $8.8 million for the No. 5 position. ("Yogi Bear" movie review, interviews with Anna Faris, Tom Cavanagh, director Eric Brevig, and Yogi Bear and Boo Boo themselves)

The sad story of the weekend belonged to Twentieth Century Fox's "Gulliver's Travels" starring Jack Black. The retelling of the Jonathan Swift classic only earned $7.2 million, debuting at No. 7. Ouch!

But Oscar baits continue to attract audiences, with "True Grit" leading the pack. Weinstein Co.'s "The King's Speech," one of my favorite films this year, earned $4.5 million after expanding into 700 theaters. Sofia Coppola's "Somewhere" from Focus Features earned over $20,000 per cinema debuting in just 7 theaters. ("Somewhere" interviews with Stephen Dorff, Elle Fanning, and Coppola)

Here's the estimated list of Top 10 Movies for weekend of December 24, the last weekend for Hollywood to impress, both financially and creatively:

1 Little Fockers (PG-13) $34.0 M $48.3 M
2 True Grit (PG-13) $25.6 M $36.8 M
3 Tron: Legacy (PG) $20.1 M $88.3 M
4 The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (PG) $10.8 M $63.9 M
5 Yogi Bear (PG) $8.8 M $36.8 M
6 The Fighter (R) $8.5 M $27.6 M
7 Gulliver's Travels (PG) $7.2 M $7.2 M
8 Black Swan (R) $6.6 M $29.0 M
9 Tangled (PG) $6.5 M $143.8 M
10 The Tourist (PG-13) $5.7 M $41.2 M

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