The Hobbit Continues US Box Office Reign For Third Week Running

The fantasy flick fended off competition from several other new releases

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'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' fended off competition from the likes 'Les Miserables' and 'Django Unchained,' remaining of the US box office for a third week in a row.

The 'Lord of the Rings' prequel grossed a further $32.9 million (£20.3 million) over the weekend holding back Quentin Tarantino's slave love story 'Django Unchained' which took in $30.7 million (£18.9 million).

Meanwhile, Anne Hathaway's 'Les Miserables,' directed by Tom Hooper, comes in third generating $28 million (£17.3 million) in ticket sales.

'The Hobbit' has now grossed a total of $222.7 million (£137.3 million) since its release in early December, completely dwarfing 'Django Unchained' and 'Les Miserables' which both opened on Christmas Day.

Nikki Rocco, Universal's president for domestic distribution, said Les Mis' takings are "phenomenal, especially considering we went into the weekend with $40 million (£24.7 million).

"People really love this movie, which is even more rewarding and gratifying," Rocco added.

Taking fourth place is Billy Crystal and Bette Midler's comedy 'Parental Guidance,' while Tom Cruise's new action flick 'Jack Reacher' trials in fifth place, grossing $14 million (£8.7 million).

In other movie news, 'Skyfall' has become the first James Bond movie to gross $1 billion, after experiencing a surge in ticket sales over the Christmas period.