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Box office update: 'Mission: Impossible' cruises to Friday win with $9.7 million

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Ghost Protocol
Industrial Light & Magic

Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol led the Friday box office with a strong $9.7 million, which should lead the action blockbuster to a $27 million weekend and roughly $60 million total earnings by Sunday night. Expect grosses to be very soft tonight (Christmas Eve is always weak at the box office) and then get a big boost on Christmas Day, which has become a big one for moviegoing over the last decade.

In second place, Warner Brothers’ Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows earned $6.8 million, lifting the mystery sequel’s total to $65.5 million. Sherlock may find $19 million over the three-day weekend.

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked turned up in third place with $5.4 million, which may lead the CG rodents to a $14 million frame and about $51 million by Sunday. Both Alvin and Sherlock are running far behind the previous films in their respective franchises.

A trio of new releases posting moderate-to-poor results fill up the next three slots. In fourth, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo did just fine with $4.6 million. The David Fincher film may take in $12.5 million this weekend, leading to $21 million by Sunday, which seems underwhelming given high expectations.

The Adventures of Tintin and We Bought A Zoo, meanwhile, couldn’t draw in families. They brought in $3.5 million and $3 million, respectively, and should both finish in the $8-9 million range.

The main takeaway here: the box office is doing better than it has in recent weeks, but these somewhat mediocre grosses prove Hollywood’s woes aren’t over. Sorry to be a Scrooge!