Warner Bros and Peter Jackson have taken heat (including from Deadline) for turning JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit into three movies, but if the first film’s box office performance is any indication they might not much care. This weekend The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey eclipsed both Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring and Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers in worldwide box office. Those pics are from Jackson’s first Tolkien trilogy, which generated $3 billion in ticket sales. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey has grossed $939,623,831 worldwide since its December 14 premiere, with foreign figuring in a greater portion of the total (69%) so far than all three of its predecessors, according to Box Office Mojo. Domestically, Hobbit crossed $100M in five days and made $3.3 million during its latest frame, bringing its North American cume to $293.2 million — that total is still short of all the LOTR movies. The last in that series, Return Of The King, grossed $1.19 billion worldwide and won the Best Picture Oscar.
The next installment in the Warner Bros-MGM series, The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug, is set to be released December 13, 2013. The third pic, The Hobbit: There And Back Again, comes out July 18, 2014.