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The Hobbit rakes in $5.5m in first day at Aussie cinemas

WARNER Bros bosses will be feeling anything but desolation after The Hobbit's Boxing Day box office success.

The film grossed $5.465 million yesterday in its first day in Australian cinemas.

The second instalment in director Peter Jackson's epic Hobbit film trilogy, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug stars Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins and sees the return of Orlando Bloom as the arrow-shooting elf Legolas.

But the second film didn't quite match last year's success of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which raked in $5.925 million to become Australia's biggest ever Boxing Day release.

So far The Desolation of Smaug has grossed $1 billion worldwide.

The second biggest Boxing Day release was Disney's new animated family film Frozen, which grossed $1.648 million.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, directed by and starring Ben Stiller, came third with $860,000 on opening day.