2012 Year in Review: Biggest Surprises At the Movies (PHOTOS)

For 2013, Hollywood has its work cut out for it.

2012 gave us the first-ever Marvel superhero team-up movie, the final Twilight film, the biggest James Bond movie ever and an unprecedented amount of Channing Tatum.

This year’s embarrassment of riches set the bar very high for movie fans. So before the new year tries to “out movie” the current one, Celebuzz looks back at seven of 2012’s biggest surprises – both pleasant and not-so-much – at the movies.

This feature is not a sequel to our most memorable movie moments – which you can read here. It’s rather a general look back/taking inventory of the year that was.

Now less reading, more…reading. But with pictures!

What surprised you at the movies this year? Sound off in the comments below.

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2012 Year in Review: 10 Most Jaw-Dropping Moments (PHOTOS)

We’re pretty jaded, we consumers of celebrity culture. Lady Gaga? Been there, seen that. Honey Boo Boo? Stranger people have become sudden stars than the zaftig 7-year-old beauty pageant contestant and her self-styled redneck clan. Nicki Minaj feuding with her new co-worker Mariah Carey? Color us unsurprised.

It took a lot more than that to make our jaws drop this year. In order for us to star slack-jawed at our screens or text, “WTF?” to our friends, we needed to see stars acting out of character, people going off the rails, or just general good old-fashioned betrayal.

The things that shocked us this year include the events that even shocked the people involved in them. That someone would cheat on international heartthrob Robert Pattinson with their older movie director? That the very classy Kate Middleton would be embroiled in a topless scandal? Or that Angus T. Austin would go religious on us and start trashing the show that made him a multi-millionaire?

Click through the gallery above for our list of the 10 most jaw-dropping moments of 2012.

Are you still stunned? Are there any astonishing moments we should have included but didn’t. Go ahead and tell us; our delicate sensibilities can handle it.

           

‘The Hobbit’ vs. ‘Skyfall’: Box Office Battle (POLL)

This weekend, the box office is in for a massive shake-up as The Hobbit challenges James Bond for the No. 1 spot.

Peter Jackson‘s much-anticipated return to Middle Earth is the sole new release this weekend, and its expected to rake in tons of hard-earned allowance money.

Holdovers like Skyfall and Twilight: Breaking Dawn — Part 2, which have shown amazing legs at the box office for the past few weeks, are expected to bow down before Bilbo and Company. But how big will The Hobbit open?

Lord of the Rings‘ legion of fans can’t wait to see the first of three prequels set in author J.R.R. Tolkien‘s world.

 

The Hobbit opens in 2D, 3D, IMAX and IMAX 3D, meaning you’d have to work very hard to not see it when it hits theaters on Friday. While reviews have been mixed-to-positive for the Warner Bros. release, a franchise this beloved is virtually critic proof. Celebuzz predicts at least a $70 million opening weekend.

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James Bond’s 23rd big-screen outing is also his most lucrative, having grossed over $910 million worldwide. Skyfall reclaimed the top spot last weekend, in its fifth week of release – which is unprecedented for any film. After 50 years, audiences cannot get enough of 007, but the super spy will most likely relinquish the box office throne to Gandalf and his 13 dwarves.

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Will you see The Hobbit this weekendCelebuzz wants to know – sound off in the comments. To get you ready for Jackson’s film, watch Celebuzz‘ list of 10 things you need to know about The Hobbit!

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‘Breaking Dawn’ to Batman, ‘Hunger Games’ to Hulk: 2012′s Biggest Box Office Hits (PHOTOS)

As far as movies go, 2012 was kind of a big deal.

This year, it felt like Hollywood believed in all of that “End of the World,” Mayan Calendar stuff, as studios released wave after wave of franchises like there was no tomorrow – and finding considerable box office success in the process.

Celebuzz rounds up the Top 10 biggest hits of the year. Which movie ranks No. 1? Read on to find out…

2012 delivered the end of the Twilight saga (for now) and the beginning of The Hunger Games. Threequels like Men in Black 3 and The Dark Knight Rises minted money, with the latter placing as one of 2012’s top five biggest earners.

At least 20 sequels entered the marketplace this year – more than ever before. Hollywood seemed to subsist solely on previously-established brands like James Bond and Spider-Man, or “intellectual property” like Hunger Games. In fact, only two films in the Top 10 this year are based on original ideas.

So what’s 2012’s biggest movie? In a minute. But first: This list reflects only the domestic grosses of theatrically-released films. (All box office figures are current as of press time.)

Which movie was your favorite this year? Sound off in the comments. And watch Celebuzz’ interview with the cast of one of 2012’s biggest hits, Breaking Dawn — Part 2below!

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‘Playing for Keeps’ vs. ‘Twilight’: Box Office Battle (POLL)

This weekend at the movies, it’s soccer-themed romantic comedy versus vampire-werewolf love story versus James Bond!

Gerard Butler‘s new movie, Playing for Keeps, is the sole new release arriving in theaters this weekend, where it will face-off against popular holdovers Twilight: Breaking Dawn — Part 2 and Skyfall. Will the 300 star and his legion of soccer mom fans be enough to defeat Team Edward?

Celebuzz wants you to weigh in on this weekend’s battle at the box office.

Keeps casts Butler as a 40-something womanizer opposite Jessica Biel in this coming-of-age late in life story. Given Keeps‘ soft marketing push, Butler and his loyal fanbase face an uphill battle if they want to dethrone Breaking Dawn — Part 2 from the No. 1 spot, where it has reigned for the last three weeks.

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The real battle for No. 1 might once again be between Breaking Dawn — Part 2 and Skyfall, two of the biggest hits of the year.

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Daniel Craig‘s third outing as the super spy became the highest grossing Bond movie in both the U.S. and London this week, while the final Twilight film cleared over $700 million in international ticket sales. This weekend will most likely mark yet another successful frame for each franchise.

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Which movie will you see this weekend? Watch Celebuzz’ interview with Gerard Butler, and then choose your pick in the comments below!

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Matt Damon In Talks for George Clooney’s ‘Monuments Men’ (REPORT)

George Clooney has already enlisted James Bond for his next film. Now, he’s looking to recruit Jason Bourne.

Matt Damon is in talks to join the period thriller The Monuments Men, a film directed and co-written by the Oscar winner, according to Deadline.

The Bourne Ultimatum star is negotiating for an unspecified role in the World War II flick, which centers on a crew of art historians that must infiltrate Nazi Germany to retrieve valuable art stolen by the Third Reich.

Should Damon sign on, he will join an impressive cast that includes 007 himself, Daniel Craig, along with Cate Blanchett and Bill Murray.

Clooney wrote the script with producing partner and writer Grant Heslov (Good Night, and Good Luck). Monuments Men reunites Damon and Clooney, who were last seen together onscreen in 2007’s Ocean’s 13.

What do you think of this casting news? Sound off below. 

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‘Twilight’ Reigns Again, ‘Killing Them Softly’ is DOA

Brad Pitt proved to be no match for Kristen Stewart, James Bond and President Lincoln.

Twilight: Breaking Dawn — Part 2, Skyfall and Lincoln held onto their box office perches for the third week in a row. Read on for how the rest of the weekend movies fared.

The fifth and final Twilight film stayed atop the box office for the third week in a row, earning $17.4 million. That brings its total domestic tally to $254.6 million, just one million shy of the biggest Twilight film: New Moon.

Skyfall came in at a close second, with $17 million. The 23rd entry in the Bond franchise is not only the series’ highest-grossing film, its also the highest grossing spy movie ever in the U.S. Skyfall’s worldwide total currently stands at $869 million.

Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln continued to show great legs at the box office. The film, which came in at No. 3 for the weekend with $13.5 million, has grossed nearly $84 million domestic. The bio-pic could easily hit the $100 million mark during the upcoming holiday frame.

3D holdovers Rise of the Guardians and Life of Pi came in fourth and fifth place, respectively. Guardians found $13.5 million in its second week in release, while director Ang Lee’s Pi grossed $12 million.

Killing Them Softly was the sole wide release this past weekend, bombing at No. 7 with a dismal $7 million. The film, which garnered a rare “F” CinemaScore rating from moviegoers, marks one of Brad Pitt’s worst opening weekends ever.

On a positive note, Ben Affleck’s Oscar-hopeful Argo reached the $100 million milestone at the box office this past weekend. This marks Affleck’s highest-grossing film as a director.

Which movie did you see this weekend? Discuss in the comments below. And did Killing Them Softly deserve its box office fate? Watch the trailer on Celebuzz and decide for yourself!

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‘Breaking Dawn’ Vs. ‘Killing Them Softly’: Box Office Battle (POLL)

Brad Pitt‘s new movie, Killing Them Softly, is (literally) gunning after Twilight: Breaking Dawn — Part 2 for box office supremacy this weekend. But will Pitt in badass mode be enough to dethrone Bella and Team Edward?

Celebuzz wants you to weigh in on this weekend’s battle at the box office.

In one corner, Pitt reunites with his Assassination of Jesse James director Andrew Dominik for the gritty crime thriller Softly. The movie, based on the novel Cogan’s Trade, centers on Pitt’s pursuit of two crooks who thought it was a good idea to rob a Mob-backed card game.

This is Pitt’s first movie since last year’s Moneyball, and if the reviews are any indication, it looks like Softly will need more than putting a shotgun in Pitt’s hands to conquer the box office.

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Breaking Dawn — Part 2 enters its third frame as the movie to beat. Since opening on November 16, the final Twilight film has retained the number one spot at the box office, despite strong competition for holdover Skyfall, the highest-grossing James Bond movie in the U.S. 

Will Kristen StewartRobert Pattinson and a crazy amount of end-battle decapitations be enough to fend off the competition?

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Which movie will you see this weekend? Watch Celebuzz’ interview with the cast of Breaking Dawn – Part 2, and then choose your pick in the comments below!

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‘Breaking Dawn’ Vs. ‘Killing Them Softly’: Box Office Battle (POLL)

Brad Pitt‘s new movie, Killing Them Softly, is (literally) gunning after Twilight: Breaking Dawn — Part 2 for box office supremacy this weekend. But will Pitt in badass mode be enough to dethrone Bella and Team Edward?

Celebuzz wants you to weigh in on this weekend’s battle at the box office.

In one corner, Pitt reunites with his Assassination of Jesse James director Andrew Dominik for the gritty crime thriller Softly. The movie, based on the novel Cogan’s Trade, centers on Pitt’s pursuit of two crooks who thought it was a good idea to rob a Mob-backed card game.

This is Pitt’s first movie since last year’s Moneyball, and if the reviews are any indication, it looks like Softly will need more than putting a shotgun in Pitt’s hands to conquer the box office.

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Breaking Dawn — Part 2 enters its third frame as the movie to beat. Since opening on November 16, the final Twilight film has retained the number one spot at the box office, despite strong competition for holdover Skyfall, the highest-grossing James Bond movie in the U.S. 

Will Kristen StewartRobert Pattinson and a crazy amount of end-battle decapitations be enough to fend off the competition?

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Which movie will you see this weekend? Watch Celebuzz’ interview with the cast of Breaking Dawn – Part 2, and then choose your pick in the comments below!

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‘Twilight’ Triumphs Again, ‘Skyfall’ Sustains Over the Thanksgiving Holiday

Twilight fans kept Breaking Dawn — Part 2 at the top of the box office for the second weekend in a row, leading to the biggest Thanksgiving weekend ever.

Daniel Craig’s Skyfall and Ang Lee’s Life of Pi also delivered big business.

How big? Read on…

The final film in the Twilight saga scored $43 million over the weekend, for a total of $64 million over the five-day holiday frame – enough to retain the number one spot for the second week in a row.

Breaking Dawn — Part 2, starring Kristen Stewart, has earned $200 million in the U.S. as of Monday, bringing its worldwide total to a franchise-high of $577 million.

In it’s third frame, Skyfall earned $34 million over the weekend, making the 23rd James Bond film the first 007 picture to hit $200 million in the U.S. Directed by Sam Mendes, Skyfall’s current worldwide box office rests at an impressive $790 million.

Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln continued to show great legs at the U.S. box office, securing the No. 3 spot with $25 million. Dreamworks’ Rise of the Guardians, considered to be a major player at the Thanksgiving box office, came in at No. 4, with a less-than-expected take of $24 million.

Meanwhile, 20th Century Fox’s adaptation of the novel Life of Pi exceeded expectations, scoring a fifth-place finish with $22 million in three days. The 3D film was expected to gross $20 million for the entire holiday period, a total it cleared in its first three days.  Currently, Pi’s five-day total sits at $30.2 million.

MGM’s long-delayed remake of Red Dawn opened at No. 7, with a 3-day tally of $14 million ($22 million over five days).

Next weekend finds Brad Pitts crime thriller, Killing Me Softly, competing with Team Edward and James Bond for box office supremacy.  Killing opens Friday, November 30.

Which movie did you check out over the holiday break? Tell Celebuzz all about it in the Comments, and watch our spoiler-tastic discussion of Breaking Dawn’s twist ending below!

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Get Shopping: Cyber Monday Electronics Gift Giving Guide (GALLERY)

Black Friday may get all the fanfare, but hardcore shoppers – and crowd-sensitive celebrities – know that for great online bargains, Cyber Monday and beyond present the best opportunities to save money, without the hassle of filling a thermos with coffee and lining up at your favorite store in the middle of the night.

In today’s Celebuzz gallery, we are on point to help you choose the best Cyber Monday electronic gifts for everyone on your shopping list. From Daniel Craig-loving Bond fans in need of a Bluray fix, to tech-savvy children who are ready for a tablet of their very own, this list breaks down the right holiday must-haves.

Cyber Monday has become a holiday phenomenon.

Cyber Monday has become more and more popular over the past few years since the term was coined.   Individuals who have seen too many horror stories about crowds gathering at their local stores have found satisfaction with getting great day-specific deals without having to emerge from their home, or their PJs. How big has the Cyber Monday become?  Industry experts estimate over $1.5 billion is sales over the course of the day in 2012.