Box Office: 'The Rise Of Skywalker' Scores $373M Worldwide, 'Cats' Fails To Land On Its Feet

1. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (review)- $175.5M
It's not often that $175.5M weekend can be considered below expectations, however, when you're Disney and looking at the final movie in Star Wars' Skywalker Saga...well, it applies. The Rise of Skywalker's debut is the third-best in December history, and that's great. However, it's also considerably less than the $248M of The Force Awakens and the $220M of The Last Jedi. Um, that's a trend, folks. There has clearly been some kind of disturbance in the Force here. That said, the film came away with a $373M worldwide haul (with ridiculously low numbers in China), and that's nothing to sneeze at. A big factor has to be the overall mixed reviews, with the film sitting at 58% on Rotten Tomatoes and a B+ Cinemascore. This "hiatus" the franchise is going through couldn't come at a better time, frankly. Some retooling needs to be done, I think.
2. Jumanji: The Next Level- $26.1M/$101.9M
In only two weekends, Jumanji: The Next Level has surpassed $100M domestic and now sits at $311M worldwide. Wow.
3. Frozen 2- $12.3M/$386.5M
4. Cats (review)- $6.5M
No use crying over spilled milk. Universal's Cats is an unmitigated disaster. The adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber's bizarre, hallucinogenic stageplay opened with just $6.5M, a rough number by any calculation. It's made worse by the star-studded cast (Idris Elba, Taylor Swift, Judi Dench) and a budget topped out at about $100M. The film has been the subject of jokes for months ever since a pair of terrible trailers dropped, and Universal has done themselves no favors by attempting to "fix" the film with a visual update post-release. It looks like they're scrambling to recover and that's exactly what they're doing.
5. Knives Out- $6.1M/$89.5M
6. Bombshell (review)- $5M/$5.4M
Expanding into wide release, Fox News drama Bombshell..well, bombed with just $5M. This is the film led by a trio of powerhouse ladies: Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, and Margot Robbie, as Fox anchors who brought down Roger Ailes over sexual harassment charges. Despite some decent buzz, and a lot of praise for Theron's transformation into Megyn Kelly, this just wasn't going to do well on a weekend dominated by folks looking to escape the harshness that's out there.
7. Richard Jewell- $2.5M/$9.5M
A similar thing happened with Richard Jewell, Clint Eastwood's drama about the 1996 Olympic Park hero-turned-FBI target. After a career-worst debut last week, the film rebounded with $2.5M and only a 45% drop, but it's too late to recover from such a poor start.
8. Queen & Slim- $1.85M/$36.5M
9. Black Christmas- $1.8M/$7.2M
10. Ford v Ferrari- $1.8M/$101.9M