As we enter the holidays Lionsgate and Bron Studios are looking to explode with the nationwide release of the Jay Roach-directed Bombshell starring Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie. The Fox News sexual harassment drama had a stellar limited opening last weekend, earning an estimated $312,000, with a per-screen average of $78,000. As it opens today in approximately 1,450 locations in North America, it is sure to put more coins in its piggy bank.
“This is an important, timely and topical film driven by world-class filmmakers and outstanding performances, great word of mouth, and the strong buzz and momentum after the Golden Globe and SAG nominations,” Damon Wolf, President of Worldwide Marketing for the Lionsgate Motion Picture Group told Deadline. “Last week’s sold-out special screenings led to one of the highest-grossing limited release engagements of the year and a 95% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.”
“Bombshell is the first major movie to explore the #metoo movement,” he adds. “Jay Roach, Charles Randolph, Chalize Theron, Nicole Kidman, Margot Robbie and John Lithgow have done a brilliant job bringing this story to life on screen and we believe it will be a film that will play well into the new year and through the Awards season.”
Even though Bombshell opens the same weekend as the Disney juggernaut Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, it is very much aimed at a different audience. It’s of the freshest titles in the specialty box office space and with its awards season buzz and the appeal of the powerful Theron-Kidman-Robbie trifecta, Bombshell has the ability to build on its limited debut.
Amazon Studios’ Invisible Life makes its limited debut today, opening at the Royal Laemmle in Los Angeles as well as the Film Forum. As Brazil’s official Oscar entry, the Karim Aïnouz-directed melodrama has the prestige to draw in the cinephile crowd. The film made its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival where it won Un Certain Regard. It went on to add accolades to its mantle as it made its festival run. Cinematographer Hélène Louvart also won the Golden Camera award at the International Cinematographers’ Film Festival Manaka Brothers.
Based on Martha Batalha’s A Vida Invisível de Eurídice Gusmão and adapted by Murilo Hauser, the film stars Carol Duarte, Julia Stockler and Fernanda Montenegro and is set in Rio de Janeiro, 1950. Eurídice and Guida are two inseparable sisters living at home with their conservative parents. Although immersed in a traditional life, each one nourishes a dream: Eurídice of becoming a renowned pianist, Guida of finding true love. In a dramatic turn, they are separated by their father and forced to live apart. They take control of their separate destinies, while never giving up hope of finding each other.
The film is set to expand to additional markets on January 3, 2020.
Wilson Yip Wai-Shun is set to kick down the door to Christmas Day with the martial arts action pic Ip Man 4: The Finale, which, as the title suggests, is supposedly the last chapter of the popular franchise starring Donnie Yen — who many of you may recognize as Chirrut Îmwe from Rogue One. He also appears in Disney’s forthcoming live-action remake of Mulan.
The Ip Man franchise launched in 2008 and is based on the life of the titular Ip Man, who is a grandmaster of the martial art known as Wing Chun and was the teacher of the legendary Bruce Lee. In Ip Man 4, Ip Man is still coping with his wife’s death and he and his son are drifting apart. To seek a better future for his son, Ip Man decides to travel to the U.S. only to find the stable, peaceful life abroad isn’t what he had hoped for. In his new life stateside he experiences deep-rooted racial discrimination that is far worse than he has expected. He re-examines his position and ponders on the reason he took up martial arts in the beginning.
Ip Man has also spawned spin-off films and others that aren’t directly related to the franchise including The Legend is Born: Ip Man, Master Z: The Ip Man Legacy and Ip Man: The Final Fight. But it’s the core Ip Man franchise directed by Wilson Yip Wai Shun and starring Yen that has been wildly bankable at the global box office and has gained a cult following in the United States.
The first Ip Man (also known as Yip Man) earned $2,188,982 in its opening weekend in China and grossed $22,108,789 worldwide. In 2010, Ip Man 2 had a domestic opening of $61,057 and grossed $15,061,802 worldwide. The franchise ballooned at the box office even more with Ip Man 3 as it debuted domestically to the tune of $784,839 and went on to earn a staggering $156,844,753 worldwide. With the growing stateside popularity of Yen and the loyal following, Ip Man 4 has the potential to find success at the domestic box office.
Ip Man 4: The Finale comes from Well Go USA Entertainment and also stars Wu Yue, Van Ness, Scott Adkins, Kent Cheng, Chan Kwok Kwan Danny, Kanin Ngo, Chris Collins and Vanda Margraf.
December 25 will also see the nationwide expansion of the Safdie Brothers’ Uncut Gems, starring Adam Sandler. Last week, A24’s crime thriller made quite an impression, earning an estimated gross of $525,498, opening in five theaters in New York and Los Angeles with a per-screen average of $105,100 — which was the biggest per-screen average opening ever for A24.
Despite a strong festival run, numerous National Board of Review accolades, a 93% Rotten Tomatoes score, an A- Cinemascore as well as multiple nominations from the Film Independent Spirit Awards, Gotham Awards and New York Film Critics Circle Awards Uncut Gems was no where to be seen on the Golden Globes nomination list. Despite that, its nationwide expansion will hopefully add fuel to its awards season tank as we inch closer to the Oscars.
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