'1917' Dethrones 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' at Weekend Box Office

'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' has dominated the box office since its debut in late December.

1917 cast

Image via Getty/Handout

1917 cast

The WWI saga 1917 nabbed the No. 1 spot at the box office, earning $36.5 million in its first weekend of wide release, Variety reports.

Directed by Sam Mendes, the film surpassed Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker, which has dominated the box office since its debut in late December.

Since opening in limited release on Christmas Day, 1917 has generated an impressive $39.22 million in North America. The movie opened globally this weekend, and pulled in $21.17 million from 28 international territories, and has now made $60 million in total.

Meanwhile, The Rise of Skywalker landed in second place at the box office this weekend, picking up another $15 million, bringing its domestic gross tp $478 million. Worldwide, Rise of Skywalker has amassed $990 million, and should hit the billion-dollar mark next week.

Last week, Mendes’ film took home the Golden Globe award for Best Motion Picture - Drama, and the director also earned the best director prize, which could account for the film's booming box office. Made to look like it was shot in one take, the film chronicles the journey of two British soldiers as they cross enemy territory to deliver a crucial message to a battalion. Everything from the color scheme to the score brings to mind Christopher Nolan's similarly tense war drama, Dunkirk, which could be by design, as Mendes brought in Dunkirk's editor Lee Smith to handle the editing of the film. 

And with 1917 expected to pick up a slew of Oscar nominations when they're announced on Monday, the film's box office dominance is only just beginning. 

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