Specialty B.O.: ‘Zero Dark Thirty’, ‘Amour’ Stellar In 2nd Weekend; ‘West Of Memphis’ OK In Debut, ‘Promised Land’ Soft
Specialty Box Office: ‘Philomena’ Debuts Strong; Is It This Year’s ‘Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’?
Brian Brooks is Managing Editor of MovieLine.
Sony/Columbia Pictures’ limited-run engagement of Zero Dark Thirty showed impressive stamina, and the studio’s specialty market distributor Sony Pictures Classics also had great news for Amour but not so great news for newcommer West Of Memphis in three-day estimates for the pre-New Year’s weekend, while Focus Features debut Promised Land bowed modestly. Columbia Pictures’ Zero Dark Thirty averaged a muscular $65K per location in its sophomore weekend in 5 theaters compared with $82K per cinema last weekend. Sony Classics’ Palme d’Or winner and Oscar short-listed foreign-language hopeful Amour held steady in three theaters in its second weekend, averaging a very strong $20K vs. its $23,554 average debut. Specialty market newcomers Promised Land, starring Matt Damon, John Krasinski and Frances McDormand headed into 25 theaters, averaging $7,606, while Sony Classics’ doc West Of Memphis managed a slender $2,771 per run in 5 cinemas. SPC’s other non-fiction offering Searching For Sugar Man, now in its 23rd weekend of release, passed the $3 million milestone this weekend. An additional newcomer, Adopt Films’ Tabu, took in $5,300 in one theater.
Promised Land marks the third collaboration between Matt Damon and director Gus Van Sant. The film faced stiff competition with year-end Oscar heavyweights and some insiders have speculated whether the film might have had a stronger showing had it been released in the Spring. The film’s $7,606 average compares to Damon and Van Sant’s previous $13,142 opening average for Gerry in 2003, although that title opened in two theaters compared to Promised Land‘s 25. Oscar-winner Good Will Hunting bowed back in 1998 with a $38,987 average in 7 theaters. “Promised Land opened to modest numbers this weekend in a very competitive holiday marketplace,” a Focus spokesperson noted today. “The film expands on January 4th to approximately 1,500 screens. Hopefully, the word-of-mouth seeded by the first wave of the platform will give the film momentum as it widens.”
Specialty Preview: ‘The Impossible’, ‘Promised Land’, ‘Hyde Park On Hudson’ Hope To Gain Momentum
Interestingly, business was up for Summit/Lionsgate’s tsunami drama The Impossible, which averaged $12,300 in the same 15 locations vs. $9,250 in its debut weekend. The Weinstein Company meanwhile expanded Silver Linings Playbook into 745 theaters, adding 374 runs in its seventh weekend. The Oscar hopeful averaged a $5,517, a solid jump from $4,908 the prior weekend in 371 theaters. Silver Linings bowed with a $27,688 average in 16 theaters.