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Per Theater Chart Won by the Other Foreign Language Oscar Contender

February 13th, 2007

Discussion about the Best Foreign Language Oscar has so far been dominated by Pan's Labyrinth, but this weekend The Lives of Others made the case that it shouldn't be ignored. The film opened with more than $200,000 in 13 theaters for an average of $16,430. It is still a long shot to expand beyond 100 theaters, but this is a good beginning. In second place was the overall box office leader, Norbit, which pulled in an average of $10,904 in more than 3,000 theaters, much to the chagrin of movie critics everywhere. Finally, last week's winner, Factory Girl placed third, earning an average of $10,872 in its 18 theaters.

The best of the rest among the openers was Operation Homecoming with just $4,516 in its lone theater, while Black Friday was well back with an estimated $2,500 in 10 theaters. That was miles ahead of Notes on Marie Menken as the film only managed $577 in one theater. And as sad as that is, it wasn't the weakest performance of the week. The Last Sin Eater was just $2 behind on the per theater chart, but with a theater count of 429 it's failure seems that much greater. I can't see a lot of theater owners keeping the film come Friday and it is very unlikely that the film will recoup the estimated $600,000 spend on prints alone.

This past week also saw milestones reached for a few Per Theater Chart alumni:

  • Guru reached $2 million over the weekend, but that's the last milestone that the film will reach.
  • Perfume: The Story of a Murderer made it to $2 million very, very, very early midweek, but it too will go no further. This would have been a disappointing result if the film wasn't so close to reaching $100 million internationally.
  • Pan's Labyrinth held up better than expected, reaching $25 million over the weekend. Logic dictates that the film won't be able to reach $30 million by the end of this coming weekend, but I wouldn't bet against it.
  • Babel topped $30 million midweek and with a little luck, and a few Oscars, it could hit a couple more milestones before its run is done.

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Filed under: Norbit, El Laberinto del Fauno, Babel, Das Leben der Anderen, Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, Guru, Factory Girl, The Last Sin Eater, Black Friday, Operation Homecoming