2012 has been a big year for the Box Office, what with a Batman finale, another Bond movie and a whole lotta Avengers assemblin' to take on some intergalactic baddies. Of course there have been a few films that didn't quite reach that all important target but there were more than enough Box Office hits to make up for it! Who do you think took home the most dosh? We've got the Top Ten highest grossing movies of 2012, as paid for with bums on cinema seats in the UK and Ireland (and Malta too, apparently):
10. The Hunger Games (March)
How much dough did we spend? €28,080,502
Jennifer Lawrence took on her most iconic role to date (among the fandoms at least, Mystique? Hello?), picked up her bow and arrow and headed into The Capitol as Katniss Everdeen. Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth joined her as Peeta and Gale, bringing to life the kinda love triangle that takes us right back into Team Edward versus Team Jacob territory. Of course we can't go without mentioning some of the superb supporting cast; Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Lenny Kravitz, Donald Sutherland and Stanley Tucci in particular. The Hunger Games put dystopia back on the Young Adult bookshelves and swept the board at pretty much every teen awards show in the world this past year. We're pretty sure the sequel, Catching Fire, will fare just fine in 2013.
9. Taken 2 (May)
How much dough did we spend? €28,471,471
He said he'd find them and kill them and that's what he did. Now their fathers and brothers are REALLY not happy so they take him and his wife instead. Liam Neeson's return was supposed to be epic, it was supposed to live up to the marvel of the 2008 cult classic, but the critics and the fans said it failed. No worries Liam lad, sure it still pulled in over €28 million at the Box Office and your career is more than likely safe. We're not quite sure we'd be Taken with another installment though.
8. Prometheus (June)
How much dough did we spend? €30,029,815
They said the key to enjoying Ridley Scott's first Sci-Fi film in over 30 years was 'managing your expectations', and while the verdict on Prometheus was varied, it's success at the Box Office wasn't. The film was a hit worldwide, coming in at just over €30 million in the UK and Ireland alone. Our very own Michael Fassbender had a starring role in the flick which follows a team of explorers who discover a clue to the origins of mankind on Earth, leading them on a journey to the darkest corners of the universe. There, they must fight a terrifying battle to save the future of the human race. And of course, it's set in the same universe as Ridley's other little movie, what was that called again? Alien?
7. The Amazing Spiderman (July)
How much dough dud we spend? €30,315,939
Well, hello Andrew Garfield, weren't you a welcome Spidey sight for sore eyes? Marc Webb (so hard to resist being punny) was at the helm of this big Spiderman reboot, and it looks like all his hard work paid off because both the critics and the Box Office responded positively. We'll put it down to a great supporting cast (How can you NOT love Martin Sheen and Sally Field?) and a pretty boy in very very tight red suit. The Amazing Spiderman followed Garfield's Peter Parker as he went searching for the truth about his past, fell in love (both on and off screen) and took on Rhys Ifans' Lizard. We can't help but feel a little sorry for Tobey Maguire; His Spiderman was sufficiently amazing in fairness.
6. Ice Age: Continental Drift (July)
How much dough did we spend? €35,263,117
This is one kids franchise that just keeps on giving, we're really not quite sure what they'll do next though. The fourth film in the Ice Age franchise follows Manny, Diego, and Sid as they embark upon yet another adventure after their continent is set adrift. Using an iceberg as a ship, they encounter sea creatures and battle pirates as they explore a new world. Educational and entertaining; who could argue with that? Nobody it seems, the film picked up a cool €35 million so we can imagine there were plenty of sleeping parents and very excited kiddies in the cinema this year!
5. Ted (August)
How much dough did we spend? €36,768,319
Hold on to your thunder buddies, it's gonna be a bumpy ride. Ted crashed into Irish cinemas with a rather loud rumble in August and quickly established itself as one of the most popular movies of the year. As the result of a childhood wish, John Bennett's (Mark Wahlberg) teddy bear, Ted (Seth McFarlane), came to life and has been by John's side ever since. Their friendship that's tested when Lori (Mila Kunis), John's girlfriend of four years, wants more from their relationship. McFarlane's big screen outing had the critics and the audience in stitches, even if there were a few dodgy 'I should not laugh at this' moments.
4. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 (November)
How much dough did we spend? €40,308,432
Now lads, Bella and Edward's last hurrah was always bound to be a Box Office hit and so it came to be. Millions of Twilight fans flocked to the cinema to see what would happen when Bella had her little babby and faced life as a vampiric mammy. Needless to say opinion was divided on the film's artistic merits, but there was no end of sobbing from the Twihards down the front when the credits rolled. Sure they could always just go and see it again tomorrow! The franchise that made stars of Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner certainly went out with a bang and will leave a rather large Box Office void.
3. The Avengers (July)
How much dough did we spend? €60,622,951
Put Robert Downey Jr, Samuel L. Jackson, Chirs Hemsworth, Chirs Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johannson, Jeremy Renner, Stellan Skarsgard and Gwyneth Paltrow together in one movie and you're likely to have a bit of Box Office success. Put them in a movie that brings Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye together to fight off Loki and his stellar associates and you're guaranteed a hit. The Avengers assembled in July and they certainly made their impact, pulling in over €60 million in the UK and Ireland and countless more worldwide. There's already a sequel on the cards and we personally can't wait to catch a first glimpse!
2. The Dark Knight Rises (July)
How much dough did we spend? €90,264,170
Christopher Nolan's Batman reboot has long been hailed as one of the BEST ever so it's no surprise that the end of his story arc brought the house and the Box Office down. The film's was the highest grossing at the Box Office at the time of its release and held that top spot until a certain secretive Scotsman hit our screens in October. Christian Bale was already well known around these parts and beyond when he first put on the mask but he'll be forever remembered as one of the most iconic caped crusaders of all time. After George Clooney, of course. Set 8 years after The Dark Knight, the film follows Batman as he resurfaces to protect Gotham (the city that has branded him an enemy) from a brand new terrorist enemy, Bane (Tom Hardy).
How much dough did we spend? €116,269,435
By early December Mr Bond had made history by breaking the UK Box Office record and pulling in over £94,277,612 (That's more than €115 million to you and I). The film toppled Avatar from that coveted historic top spot and will be tough to beat in 2013. Skyfall sees our favourite secret agent with a license to kill head off on yet another adventure, determined to find the man who has hacked his way in to MI5's most precious resources. Daniel Craig's a rather vulnerable Bond this time around while Javier Bardem's baddie, well, he's a bit mad isn't he? We can certainly see why this one pulled the crowds in.