Strong Box Office Debut for Narnia

Posted on December 13, 2005

Narnia movie posterThe Disney and Walden Media remake of the C.S. Lewis classic, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, was a huge hit over the weekend bringing in a massive take of $65.6 million. This will make film versions of the other six books in the series much more likely. Box Office Mojo said Narnia's opening tally was the second biggest December debut ever behind Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.
Playing on about 6,800 screens across 3,616 locations, Narnia drummed up $65.6 million, exceeding industry expectations in the $50 million range. The opening was the second-biggest ever for December behind The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King's $72.8 million and the third best start for distributor Buena Vista, behind The Incredibles and Finding Nemo.

Saturday exit polls by Buena Vista indicated that families made up 53 percent of Narnia's audience, and that 55 percent of moviegoers were under 25 years old and 52 percent were male. Audiences generally liked the picture, grading it an "A+" in CinemaScore's opening night surveys, which also showed that the "subject matter" was by far the top reason people saw the movie.

"No movie can do this kind of business on this weekend of the year without playing to everyone," said Chuck Viane, Buena Vista's head of distribution. "When you look at the balance of this film, every part of the country is playing at its potential."

It is good to see fantasy continuing to perform well at the Box Office. The Box Office Mojo article mentions a few other fantasy films coming out over the next few years.
Hollywood will continue to follow the literary fantasy trend with Eragon due next December and His Dark Materials: The Golden Compass for December 2007 among other projects, while The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe was conceived as the first adaptation of Lewis' seven-novel Narnia series.
With the success of Narnia we wouldn't be surprised to see even more fantasy offerings from Hollywood.

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