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The box-office headlines from the weekend have understandably been dominated by "Wreck-It Ralph," whose healthy opening gross (the highest ever for a Disney animated effort) helps its chances in a crowded Oscar race. But the runner-up on the chart, "Flight," made no less noteworthy a debut, taking just over $25m, despite a relatively modest release in 1884 theaters. That puts it roughly on pace with the last Denzel Washington starrer "Safe House," which took $40m from a wider release, though "Flight" has considerably more room to build. It's also considerably outpaced the $13m gross box office pundits predicted for the film, and nearly recouped its tidy $31m budget. Paramount distribution head Don Harris reckons the film's adult target market will be more in the mood for going to the movies once the presidential election and Hurricane Sandy are behind them. [Reuters]
Tom Shone, looking at the Best Actor race, thinks Washington's performance has a "sanded ergonomic beauty" that's too good to win the Oscar. [These Violent Delights]
Jon Weisman wonders if the strong reviews and returns for "Wreck-It Ralph" make it a candidate for not just a Best Animated Feature nod, but a Best Picture one too. [The Vote]
Between the weather and the studio juggernauts, Tom Brueggemann finds that the specialty box office is having a rough time of it. [Thompson on Hollywood]
"Hugo," "The Avengers," "The Adventures of Tintin" and "The Iron Lady" were among the films rewarded at the Hollywood Post Alliance Awards for post-production excellence. [Below the Line]
Nathaniel Rogers wonders if "The Impossible" -- a film he always thought a tricky prospect for the Oscars -- will struggle further in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Will voters feel like watching it? [The Film Experience]
The London Film Critics' Circle announces a January 20 date for their swanky awards ceremony. [Critics' Circle]
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