The Weinstein Company’s Lion roared atop the Thanksgiving Specialty box office, also managing to capture the weekend’s highest per theater average. Lion, starring Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman and Rooney Mara, bagged $128,368 Friday to Sunday. Not far off in PTA was Manchester By the Sea, from Amazon Studios and Roadside Attractions, though that feature starring Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams and Lucas Hedges played its second weekend with a 44 theater expansion. The Kenneth Lonergan-directed awards-hopeful grossed over $1.25 million in the three-day estimate. Among other openers, EuropaCorp’s Miss Sloane bowed with a tidy $63K in three locations, while the weekend’s widest Specialty opener, Dear Zindagi from Reliance Entertainment, took in over $1.5 million. Oscilloscope thriller Always Shine scared up $4,500 in an exclusive bow, while IFC Films’ Évolution grossed $6,927 from three initial runs. And Music Box’s Seasons opened in 13 theaters, grossing $26,723. Loving landed just outside the top 10 as of Sunday morning with an expansion to 421 locations, grossing over $1.69 million. And in its sixth week, Moonlight took $1.3 million in a bit fewer theaters than last week.

Garth Davis’ Lion reigned over the Specialty newcomers, with TWC reporting three-day estimates for four New York and Los Angeles locations at $128,368, averaging $32,092, comfortably among the weekend’s best PTAs and one of the top openers for the distributor this year. TWC picked up Lion in the script stage at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival.

“We’re excited about the opening of the movie obviously,” said TWC COO David Glasser. “This is an audience pleaser. Right now, people are looking for an uplifting positive movie and we’re excited because people are excited by the movie.”

Glasser noted that 92% of audiences in exit polls rated the movie highly, with audiences both older and younger turning out. “We have 50% under 35,” noted Laurent Ouaknine, EVP of Distribution. “It skewed more female, which is what we expected, but everyone loves the movie once they see it. With the four theaters this weekend, both New York and Los Angeles performed very equally.”

lionposter
The Weinstein Company

Ouaknine said The Landmark in L.A. grossed over $26K Friday and Saturday, while the Paris took in over $25K in the 48 hour period. The Angelika and Arclight were about the same, grossing over $19K Friday and Saturday.

“We’re going to do a traditional slow roll out as we’ve doe with others in the past like The King’s Speech, The Artist [and others],” added Ouaknine. Next week, Lion will add runs in other L.A. areas and then go wider December 9 coinciding with Golden Globe nominations. The feature will be in 600 to 650 locations by Christmas.

EuropaCorp opened John Madden’s Miss Sloane starring Jessica Chastain in three locations. The feature, which also features John Lithgow and Gugu Mbatha-Raw had the weekend’s second best PTA showing. It averaged $21K from a $63K gross, behind Lion and Manchester By the Sea. The feature will continue to roll out in the coming weeks.

Reliance Entertainment’s Indian-produced Dear Zindagi starring Shah Rukh Khan in 153 locations, starting off with a $1,502,078 gross Wednesday through Sunday. That gives the feature a decent average of about $9,818 over the period. It’s worth noting the film played 145 locations Wednesday and Thursday, peaking at 154 on Friday before settling at 152 and 153 runs Saturday and Sunday, respectively.

dearzindagiposter
Reliance Entertainment

Dear Zindagi already has garnered huge curiosity among the consumers with its interesting cast including Shah Rukh Khan and Alia Bhatt, cool storyline and really intelligent teasers,” said Shibasish Sarkar, COO of Reliance Entertainment earlier this week. “We feel it’s a right fit for the market we have chosen to distribute…Indian films starring Shah Rukh Khan are almost like a genre of their own — it has its own loyal audience and fan following.”

Oscilloscope debuted its Tribeca thriller Always Shine by Sophia Takal in an exclusive bow, grossing $4,500. It will next head to about 20 additional engagements including Los Angeles on December 2, coinciding with its VOD roll-out. “We think anyone who enjoys a twisty, psychological thriller but relies on reviews to help guide their decision will respond very well,” said O-scope’s Andrew Carling earlier this week. “And we expect those same genre elements to help drive the digital side of the release.”

Also opening were IFC Films’ thriller Évolution by French filmmaker Lucile Hadžihalilović in three theaters. The feature grossed $6,927, averaging $2,309. The feature will next go to top markets such as Boston, San Francisco and Austin in the coming weeks. It will open on VOD/digital platforms November 25.

Music Box Films opened Seasons in 13 locations. The French feature grossed $26,723, averaging $2,056. The company will take the feature to about 15 engagements net Friday including Chicago, Phoenix and St. Louis, while also expanding its presence in Los Angeles and the Bay Area.

Manchester By The Sea Casey Affleck
Roadside Attractions/Amazon

Manchester By the Sea had a robust weekend in expansion in its second frame. The Amazon Studios/Roadside Attractions release grossed $1,250,294 in 48 theaters, up from its opening weekend four locations. That gave the feature with Casey Affleck a $26,048 PTA. In its debut last week, the feature grossed $241,230 in four locations, averaging $60,308, the fourth highest per theater average of 2016.

Manchester By the Sea “expanded nicely,” said Amazon’s head of marketing and distribution, Bob Berney. “It is a working class story that is connecting with people. [Audiences] are blown away by Casey Affleck’s performance.” Amazon noted Sunday its 97% Fresh rating on RT and 96 on Metacritic. The company also noted Manchester was the number one feature in 33 of the 48 locations it played over the weekend.

Abramorama added a single run for doc Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened in its second weekend. The feature grossed $17,670 in three locations ($5,890 average). The title directed by Lonny Price opened with two runs last weekend grossing $22,573 ($11,262 average). Its three-week cume is $52,966.

nocturnalanimalsposter
Focus Features

Focus Features added 90 runs for the second weekend of Nocturnal Animals. In a total of 127 theaters, the feature by second-time director Tom Ford and starring Amy Adams and Jake Gyllenhaal grossed $816K Friday to Saturday ($6,425 average). Focus also gave five-day estimates for the film, coming in at $1.08 million ($8,504 average). The film’s two-week cume is now $1,669,834. Focus will expand the feature across the U.S. December 9.

Focus’ Loving played an additional 284 locations vs. the weekend prior, showing some zest, landing 11th in the overall box office as of Sunday morning L.A. time. In 421 theaters, the feature starring Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga grossed $1,691,000 ($4,017 average) Friday to Sunday. Over the five-day holiday weekend, Focus said the feature grossed 2,129,000 ($5,057 average), giving it a four-week cume of $4,069,771.

The company said Sunday that the film, “continues to benefit from strong word-of-mouth and positive reviews,” (including a 90% RT score), and that the film, “had a very strong Thanksgiving weekend in both holdover and expansion markets.”

SPC added 12 runs for its foreign-language awards contender Elle by Paul Verhoeven in its third weekend. Starring Isabelle Huppert, the feature grossed $123,256 in 36 theaters, averaging $3,563. Last week, the feature grossed $128,701 ($5,363 average) in 24 locations. Its three-week cume is now $404,756. Sony Classics’ doc, The Eagle Huntress expanded by 25 theaters. The feature grossed $278,292 from 64 runs, averaging $4,348. In its third weekend, the film grossed $195,649 in 39 locations, averaging $5,017. The film has now cumed $923,643 and should cross seven-figures in the next week.

Moonlight.jpeg
A24

A24’s Moonlight chalked up $1.3 million in 618 theaters. The gross gave the feature a $2,104 average, down slightly from last week’s $2,436 from a gross of $1,583,433 in 650 theaters. Moonlight’s 6-week cume is now $8,624,896.

And Music Box’s A Man Called Ove crossed $3 million over the weekend. Sweden’s entry for Best Foreign-Language Oscar consideration grossed $110,296 in 81 theaters, averaging $1,362.

All grosses are 3-day numbers unless otherwise noted.

NEW RELEASES

Always Shine (Oscilloscope) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $4,500

Dear Zindagi (Reliance Entertainment) NEW [153 Theaters] Weekend $1,502,078, Average $9,818 (5-day)

Evolution (IFC Films) NEW [3 Theaters] Weekend $6,927, Average $2,309

Lion (The Weinstein Company) NEW [4 Theaters] Weekend $128,368, Average $32,092 (3-day)

miss_sloane
Europacorp

Miss Sloane (EuropaCorp) NEW [3 Theaters] Weekend $63K, Average $21K

Seasons (Music Box Films) NEW [13 Theaters] Weekend $26,723, Average $2,056, Cume $26,723 (3-day)

RETURNING/SECOND WEEKEND

Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened (Abramorama) Week 2 [3 Theaters] Weekend $17,670, Average $5,890, Cume $52,966

Daughters Of the Dust (Cohen Media Group, 2016 re-release) Week 2 [3 Theaters] Weekend $9,068, Average $3,023, Cume $21,692

Manchester By The Sea (Amazon Studios/Roadside Attractions) Week 2 [48 Theaters] Weekend $1,250,294, Average $26,048, Cume $1,651,933

Nocturnal Animals (Focus Features) Week 2 [127 Theaters] Weekend $816K (3-day); $1.08M (5-day), Average $6,425 (3-day), Average $8,504 (5-day); Cume $1,669,834

Billy Lynn (Joe Alwyn) in TriStar Pictures' BILLY LYNN'S LONG HALFTIME WALK.
TriStar Pictures

HOLDOVERS / THIRD+ WEEKENDS

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk (TriStar Pictures) Week 3 [1,176 Theaters] Weekend $210K, Average $179, Cume $1,593,724

Elle (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 3 [36 Theaters] Weekend $123,256, Average $3,563, Cume $404,756

The Love Witch (Oscilloscope) Week 3 [15 Theaters] Weekend $21K, Average $1,400, Cume $105,434

Shut In (EuropaCorp) Week 3 [277 Theaters] Weekend $240K, Average $866, Cume $6,712,128

The Eagle Huntress (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 4 [64 Theaters] Weekend $278,292, Average $4,348, Cume $923,643

Loving (Focus Features) Week 4 [421 Theaters] Weekend $1,691,000 (3-day); $2,129,000 (5-day), Average $4,017 (3-day); Average $5,057 (5-day), Cume $4,069,771

American Pastoral (Lionsgate) Week 6 [14 Theaters] Weekend $3,100 (3-day); $5,500 (5-day), Average $221 (3-day) $393 (5-day), Cume $540,770 (5-day)

Moonlight (A24) Week 6 [618 Theaters] Weekend $1.3M, Average $2,104, Cume $8,624,896

Laura Dern - Certain Women.jpeg
IFC

Certain Women (IFC Films) Week 7 [19 Theaters] Weekend $10,450, Average $550, Cume $1,032,942

Christine (The Orchard) Week 7 [23 Theaters] Weekend $8,667, Average $377, Cume $270,749

Harry & Snowman (FilmRise) Week 9 [12 Theaters] Weekend $12K, Average $1K, Cume $501,446

A Man Called Ove (Music Box Films) Week 9 [81 Theaters] Weekend $110,296, Average $1,362, Cume $3,017,322

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years (Abramorama) Week 11 [7 Theaters] Weekend $7,140, Average $1,020, Cume $2,882,251

Don’t Think Twice (The Film Arcade) Week 20 [5 Theaters] Weekend $6,928, Average $1,386, Cume $4,417,983