Holdovers seized the spotlight — literally — this weekend from newcomers like Casa Grande and Ingrid Bergman: In Her Own Words. Awards heavyweights Spotlight and Brooklyn headed into their second weekends with gusto in expansion. The Open Road Films and Fox Searchlight releases held the highest and second-best per theater averages respectively, outshining the crowded field of new releases. Gotham Awards-nominee James White opened at the Sunshine Theatre in New York, topping the weekend’s newcomers in terms of PTA. Also delivering an impressive debut, Bollywood title Prem Ratan Dhan Payo made the top 10 among overall box office.
The Film Arcade debuted Sundance ’15 favorite James White by writer-director Josh Mond exclusively at the Sunshine Theatre in New York Friday. Starring Christopher Abbott and Cynthia Nixon, the picture grossed $12,120 from that single venue. “We’re off to a great start and very happy with the critical and audience response, especially considering all the award-contending films currently in the marketplace,” said The Film Arcade’s Andy Bohn. He pointed out James White‘s 90% score on Rotten Tomatoes and that the film is an NYT Critics pick. Ahead of next weekend’s opening at the Arclight Hollywood, the film took the AFI Audience Award last week.
Looking at scale, Bollywood was the big money earner this weekend among specialties. Prem Ratan Dhan Payo starring Salman Khan, Sonam Kapoor, Anupam Kher, and Neil Nitin Mukesh placed 8th in the overall North American box office, but it was in far fewer locations than any other title in the Top 10. The Fox International Productions release grossed a solid $2.4 million in 286 theaters, which is actually the widest opening for a Bollywood film in North America to date. Since opening Thursday, the feature has cumed over $2.78 million stateside. Overseas, Prem Ratan Dhan Payo grossed $30.1 million, earning the No. 2 slot among international releases and setting a Bollywood record.
Launching with a solid run exclusively in New York was Rialto Pictures’ doc Ingrid Bergman: In Her Own Words. The film, which features extensive footage shot by the three-time Oscar-winner herself, grossed $8,500 at Lincoln Plaza. Rialto is giving the title limited award-qualifying runs in NYC and L.A. starting next weekend in addition to a short window in Washington, D.C. tied to events hosted by the Swedish embassy in honor of the star’s 100th birthday on August 29th. Rialto plans to roll out the documentary in other markets in 2016.
China Lion opened The Last Women Standing following its November 6th rollout in China. The feature grossed 75K over the weekend in 17 theaters, averaging $4,411. It has taken in $119,611 since opening Wednesday. Cinema Slate, meanwhile, opened Brazilian film Casa Grande in a single cinema, coinciding with its on-demand debut on Fandor. The film grossed $3,500 for the weekend. The label’s Rodrigo Brandao said the film was the “highest grosser” at Cinema Village over the weekend, and in the theater’s “smallest room.” Casa Grande will hold in New York next weekend.
Two Oscar hopefuls, Spotlight and Brooklyn, were the main specialty stars this weekend. Both titles had the highest PTAs among all releases, even as they added theaters.
Open Road’s Spotlight scooped the weekend’s best PTA, grossing nearly $1.4 million in 60 theaters (55 more than its opening weekend), giving it a robust $23,307 average. Open Road’s Jason Cassidy noted Sunday the film is enjoying “great word-of-mouth” and is receiving top scores across the board. “Rotten Tomatoes is 97% and the reviews are spectacular,” said Cassidy. “We’re going to expand steadily each week. We don’t want to miss a step and we want to make sure theaters we’re already in won’t have big drops. The theaters we were in last weekend did not have big drops and we want to keep it that way.” Cassidy said Spotlight will head to somewhere between 400 to 500 theaters in the coming week.
Fox Searchlight’s Brooklyn had the weekend’s second-highest PTA in its second frame. It grossed $485K in 23 theaters, averaging just over $21K. Brooklyn opened last week in five theaters, grossing $181K for a $36,200 PTA. It has now cumed nearly $833K. “Scores from polling last night indicate very good response from moviegoers 92% in the top two boxes and ‘definite recommend’ numbers coming in at over 80% — definitely tremendous scores,” Searchlight’s Frank Rodriguez said Sunday. “Our holdovers from theaters that played last week were excellent with a couple of theaters actually going up from last weekend.”
Frederick Wiseman’s doc In Jackson Heights held solid in its second frame. The film’s numbers were actually up 4% Friday vs the previous Friday at Film Forum in New York. In Jackson Heights also opened an exclusive engagement in Washington DC, where the numbers quadrupled from Friday to Saturday. In its second weekend, the film is estimated to gross $17,435 for a theater average of $8,718, bringing its cume to $45,896. The film will open exclusive engagements in Boston, Seattle and Toronto next weekend before expanding to further top markets including Los Angeles, Chicago, and San Francisco in late November and throughout December.
In its second weekend, Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate’s Miss You Already crossed $1 million. The feature, however, puddled with a $196,400 gross in 311 theaters, giving it a slight $632 average. Miss You Already grossed over $572K opening weekend, averaging $1,490.
Among other holdovers, A24’s Room continues to show zest in its fifth week. The distributor said strong word of mouth is fueling the title’s continued rollout. Room grossed $578K in 133 theaters, averaging $4,347, the highest PTA of any holdover of three weeks or more.
The Orchard’s documentary Oscar contender Cartel Land, meanwhile, continues to screen since opening in early July. This weekend the film by Matthew Heineman is playing DOC NYC’s contender’s sidebar. The film has also been making a splash on demand. The Orchard reported the film has cumed an estimated $1.2 million on-demand.
Casa Grande (Cinema Slate) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $3,500
Ingrid Bergman: In Her Own Words (Rialto Pictures) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $8,500
James White (The Film Arcade) [1 Theater] Weekend $12,120
The Last Women Standing (China Lion) NEW [17 Theaters] Weekend $75K, Average $4,411, Cume $119,611 (Wed. Open)
Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (FIP) NEW [286 Theaters] Weekend $2.4M, Average $8,392, Cume $2,787,433 (Thurs. Open)
Brooklyn (Fox Searchlight) Week 2 [23 Theaters] Weekend $485K, Average $21,087, Cume $832,996
In Jackson Heights (Zipporah Films) Week 2 [2 Theaters] Weekend $17,435, Average $8,718, Cume $45,896
Miss You Already (Roadside Attractions/Lionsgate) Week 2 [311 Theaters] Weekend $196,400, Average $632, Cume $1,052,409
Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict (Submarine Deluxe) Week 2 [5 Theaters] Weekend $21,781, Average $4,356, Cume $57,047
Spotlight (Open Road Films) Week 2 [60 Theaters] Weekend $1,398,405, Average $23,307, Cume $1,845,175
Trumbo (Bleecker Street) Week 2 [20 Theaters] Weekend $141,933, Average $7,096, Cume $247,894
What Our Fathers Did: A Nazi Legacy (Oscilloscope) Week 2 [14 Theaters] Weekend $15K, Average $1,071, Cume $26,681
HOLDOVERS / THIRD+ WEEKENDS
Heneral Luna (Abramorama) Week 3 [24 Theaters] Weekend $36,376, Average $1,516, Cume $195,580
The Witness (China Lion) Week 3 [14 Theaters] Weekend $20K, Average $1,429, Cume $410,198
Heart Of A Dog (Abramorama) Week 4 [12 Theater] Weekend $27,244, Average $2,270, Cume $109,956
Nasty Baby (The Orchard) Week 4 [3 Theaters] Weekend $304, Average $101, Cume $79,800; VOD Estimate: $70K
Suffragette (Focus Features) Week 4 [496 Theaters] Weekend $1M, Average $2,016, Cume $2,544,280
All Things Must Pass (Gravitas Ventures) Week 5 [13 Theaters] Weekend $13K, Average $1K, Cume $142,259
Room (A24) Week 5 [133 Theaters] Weekend $578,151, Average $4,347, Cume $2,287,446
Truth (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 5 [157 Theaters] Weekend $157,987, Average $1,006, Cume $2,290,424
Goodbye Mr. Loser (China Lion) Week 6 [2 Theaters] Weekend $3K, Average $1,500, Cume $1,286,126
Ladrones (Lionsgate/Pantelion) Week 6 [35 Theaters] Weekend $16K, Average $457, Cume $3,058,014
Labyrinth Of Lies (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 7 [72 Theaters] Weekend $69,697, Average $968, Cume $627,829
Goodnight Mommy (RADiUS) Week 10 [15 Theaters] Weekend $15,934, Average $1,062, Cume $1,168,754
Cartel Land (The Orchard) [1 Theater] Weekend $430, Theatrical Cume $704,352; VOD Week 8 Estimate: $1.2M