Every day is probably a pretty good day to be Leonardo DiCaprio. But even by the high standards of a wealthy, eternally youthful Hollywood celebrity who gets to hang out with Martin Scorsese, it’s a really good day to be Leonardo DiCaprio. At last night’s Golden Globes, he won Best Actor in a Drama for his performance/willingness to eat raw bison liver in The Revenant, which also took home Best Director and Best Motion Picture That Isn’t A Comedy, Musical, Or A Science-Fiction Survival Story With Moments Of Comedy And Some Music. And to make the afterglow even sweeter, the returns are in on The Revenant’s first weekend in wide release—and yeah, it’s a hit.
Alejandro González Iñárritu’s visceral frontier drama made $38 million on about 3,300 screens—a really good showing for an R-rated, two-half-and-a-half-hour Western with long stretches of wordless action. Most seem to be attributing the film’s surprisingly robust box-office to Leo, whose last few films have all opened strong, making him a bankable star in an age of think pieces about how we don’t have any more bankable stars. Maybe Quentin Tarantino should have cast him in the Channing Tatum role for The Hateful Eight, which could have used the help; clearly the loser in the head-to-head box-office showdown between two very similar but also very different Westerns that just expanded into wide release, Eight hemorrhaged half its audience for a soft $6.3 million weekend. Will Thursday’s Oscar nominations give both or either film a boost?
The Revenant placed second on the charts, losing out to a movie that may get Oscar nominations but sure as hell doesn’t need any kind of boost. The Force Awakens continues to shatter records; it’s not only the highest grossing film of all time in the United States, but is now also the first film to pass $800 million in domestic dollars. (It also made $53 million in China, where it opened on a Saturday and promptly destroyed the record for rare Saturday openings.) Start taking bets on when this monster slips out of first place. It probably won’t be next weekend, though 13 Hours, Michael Bay’s sure-to-be-tasteful Benghazi movie, could lure the same audience that made gigantic hits out of American Sniper and Lone Survivor this time last year and the year before that. History does tend to repeat itself at the box-office, after all, which is about the only theory we can muster for why audiences spent $13 million on The Forest—around the same amount folks tend to throw at a throwaway horror movie every January, regardless of how shitty they turn out.
For more detailed numbers, visit Box Office Mojo.