The Möbius strip: Krampus surprises, awards start rolling in

As with last week, part two of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay took the crown with an unimpressive total — $18.9 million — but the real story is the surprising runner up, Krampus. The weekend’s only wide release was expected to settle for the no. 4 spot far behind Mockingjay, The Good Dinosaur and Creed with less than $10 million, but it stunned with $16.3 million. Good Dinosaur fell to no. 3 with $15.3 million, and Creed to no. 4 with $15 million- Box Office Mojo

With its surprising performance, thoughts turn to Krampus’ franchise potential- The Wrap

The Good Dinosaur was expected to compete with Mockingjay for the top spot, but instead was neck and neck with Creed and ended up at no. 3. The movie is suddenly looking like Pixar’s first ever financial misstep- Variety

Awards season got underway in earnest last week, with Spotlight and Mad Max: Fury Road pulling ahead of the competition in most cases. The National Board of Review pegged Fury Road as the year’s best, but also gave a lot of love to The Martian, which won best director, best actor and best adapted screenplay in addition to being honored as one of the year’s top 10- The Hollywood Reporter

The New York Film Critic’s Circle, however, went with Carol, which also came away with best director, best screenplay and best cinematography- Variety

The Los Angeles Film Critic Association went with Spotlight. Fury Road was the runner up, and also won for best director, best cinematography and best production design- Los Angeles Times

The Boston Society of Film Critics, rather predictably, also when with the Boston-set Spotlight, which also took away best screenplay and best ensemble and was second for best director and best editing. Fury Road was also their runner-up, and won best editing. Carol won best director and best cinematography. Best newcomer went to writer/directors Marielle Heller and Alex Garland for Diary of a Teenage Girl and Ex Machina, respectively- Boston Globe

The Gotham Independent Film Awards also went with Spotlight for best picture and best screenplay- Indiewire

Garland and Ex Machina cleaned house at the British Independent Film Awards, with the film winning best picture and Garland winning individually for his direction and screenplay- The Guardian

The Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association also tabbed Spotlight for best picture and best ensemble. Fury Road picked up best director, best editing and best production design- Variety

The African American Film Critics Association picked Straight Outta Compton as the year’s best picture- Indiewire

Quinten Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight premiered in Los Angeles yesterday without incident. The Fraternal Order of Police very creepily threatened the filmmaker last month over his comments on police brutality- The Hollywood Reporter

Tarantino continues to stand by his statements and plans to expand on them after The Hateful Eight’s release wraps up- The Hollywood Reporter

After revealing himself as HIV-positive two weeks ago, actor Charlie Sheen was hit with a handful of lawsuits from former lovers claiming he did not disclose his status. However, this new one from porn star Brett Rossi claims that Sheen held her against her will and assaulted her, in addition to not disclosing his status. Sheen has since denied the claims- The Hollywood Reporter

In their raid on the home of the San Bernando shooter, MSNBC’s and CNN’s ethics were compared to the lead character of last year’s Nightcrawler- The Wrap

Over the first few months of awards season, long-time A-list actors Sandra Bullock, Bradley Cooper and Angelina Jolie all saw passion projects bomb miserably at the box office. Jennifer Lawrence, Leonardo DiCaprio and Will Smith will see their own Oscar contenders premiere Christmas day. If they also flounder, could Hollywood start to move away from the star-based system?- Variety

As Netflix has expanded globally, it has encountered a new problem. As films release at different times in different markets, the streaming service now must navigate movies it only has the rights to stream in part of the world- Variety

Creed follows Donnie Johnson, who is the son of Apollo Creed, a rival boxer from the first four Rocky films. Carl Weathers, who played Creed four times, talks about how he got the role, how it feels to see his character’s son on screen and how Muhammed Ali always wanted to fight him- The Hollywood Reporter

Tim Burton favorite Edward Scissorhands turned 25 yesterday. Variety’s Matthew Chernov explores the film’s history, starting from its cool box office reception- Variety

AFI fest held its indie contenders panel for the second year, an hour long talk about the state of indies with representatives from seven of the top independent movies of the year, headlined by Olivia Wilde- The Hollywood Reporter

The Alamo Drafthouse in Austin, Texas is searching for the most hardcore Star Wars fan. After it releases, the theater will play The Force Awakens on an endless loop for seven contestants. The one who lasts the longest will receive a seven-year pass to the theater- The Hollywood Reporter

Carol director Todd Haynes and producer Christine Vachon talk about the drama’s relevance to modern LGBT issues, despite being set in the 1950s- Variety

And finally, watch most of that astonishing one-shot boxing match from Creed, with director Ryan Coogler narrating and explaining what went into it- New York Times

 

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