The down weekend was unlikely to dampen the Oscar celebration. The nine best picture nominees have largely fared well at the box office. This weekend, eight of them are in the top 21 films.
For the first time since the category's number of nominees was extended in 2009, six of the nominees grossed more than $100 million domestically: Argo, Lincoln, 'Les Miserables, Silver Linings Playbook, Django Unchained and Life of Pi. Zero Dark Thirty missed narrowly with $91.6 million going into the Oscars.
"It's one of the best performing groups of nominees I've ever seen," said Paul Dergarabedian, an analyst for box-office tracker Hollywood.com. "Great night for Hollywood, tough day at the box office."
A box-office bump could follow for Sunday's big winners, though any benefit might be better found overseas, where some of the films are still expanding. The best picture favorite, Ben Affleck's Iran rescue thriller Argo, is already out on DVD in North America.