The new release easily topped analysts' expectations, which ranged from $20 million to $25.5 million.
New release xXx: The Return of Xander starring actor Vin Diesel came in second place with $20 million, in line with estimates. Last weekend's winnerHidden Figures from 20th Century Fox (FOXA) - Get Fox Corporation Class A Report took third place with $16.3 million, a decline of 41% week-over-week. Rounding out the top five were Sing from Universal and La La Land from Lionsgate (LGF) grossing $9 million and $8.4 million, respectively.
The domestic box office easily surpassed forecasts this weekend and produced its first up weekend of the year, MKM Partners noted. Revenue from the weekend's top 10 films totaled $121 million, above the firm's forecast of $107 million and an increase of 27% year-over-year.
But box office revenue is down 4% quarter-to-date through Jan. 22, according to MKM. "Despite this weekend's positive results, the month's difficult comparisons will resume next weekend coming up against last year's $41 million debut for Kung Fu Panda 3," MKM Managing Director Eric Handler wrote in a note.
On Saturday, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story reached the $1 billion worldwide mark on its 39th day of release, becoming the 13th Walt Disney (DIS) - Get Walt Disney Company Report release ever to do so and the third Star Wars film to hit that milestone. It is also Disney's fourth 2016 release to cross the $1 billion mark, the company said.
Rogue One has taken in an estimated $512 million domestically and $499 million internationally for a global total of $1.01 billion through Jan. 22. It is the number one domestic release of 2016 and the number seven domestic release of all time, as well as the number four global release of 2016, according to Disney. The film's top markets are the U.K., China and Germany.