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The 20 Highest Grossing Indies of 2017 (A Running List)

Refreshed weekly, here's a chart of 2017's twenty highest-grossing specialty films (so far).

4101_D009_03963_RJessica Chastain stars as Antonina Zabinski in director Niki Caro's THE ZOOKEEPER'S WIFE, a Focus Features release.Credit: Anne Marie Fox / Focus Features

“The Zookeeper’s Wife”

Anne Marie Fox

Please note: The below list only includes domestic (U.S. and Canada only, unless otherwise indicated) grosses for specialty films — indie, foreign (including Bollywood films that open in limited release) and/or documentary — that opened in limited release (599 screens and under) in 2017 and/or were acquired for 2017 distribution by an independent distributor or a studio (or its speciality division). It also includes films that screened only as an Academy-qualifier in 2016.

Grosses include all reported grosses up to May 23, 2017. This chart is updated every Tuesday afternoon. (Last year’s list can be found here.)

1. “Gifted”
Distributor: Fox Searchlight
Release Date: April 7th
Opening Theater Count: 56
Opening Average: $7,791
Current Gross: $22,900,823

2. “Baahubali 2: The Conclusion”
Distributor: Great India Films
Release Date: April 28th
Opening Theater Count: 425
Opening Average: $24,364
Current Gross: $19,390,702

3. “The Zookeeper’s Wife”
Distributor: Focus Features
Release Date: March 31st
Opening Theater Count: 541
Opening Average: $6,079
Current Gross: $16,839,076

4. “Before I Fall”
Distributor: Open Road Films
Release Date: March 3rd
Opening Theater Count: 2,346
Opening Average: $1,999
Current Gross: $12,241,122

before i fall movie zoey deutch halston sage

“Before I Fall”

5. “The Belko Experiment”
Distributor: BH Tilt
Release Date: March 17th
Opening Theater Count: 1,341
Opening Average: $3,085
Current Gross: $10,164,675

6. “The Promise”
Distributor: Open Road Films (acquired at TIFF)
Release Date: April 21st
Opening Theater Count: 2,251
Opening Average: $1,820
Current Gross: $8,224,288

7. “The Lost City of Z”
Distributor: Bleecker Street, Amazon
Release Date: April 14th
Opening Theater Count: 4
Opening Average: $27,544
Current Gross: $8,010,429

8. “I Am Not Your Negro”
Distributor: Magnolia
Release Date: February 3rd
Opening Theater Count: 43
Opening Average: $15,962
Current Gross: $7,106,285

“Your Name.”

9. “Your Name.”
Distributor: FUNimation
Release Date: April 7th
Opening Theater Count: 290
Opening Average: $5,662
Current Gross: $4,806,061

10. “Lowriders”
Distributor: BH Tilt
Release Date: May 12th
Opening Theater Count: 295
Opening Average: $8,149
Current Gross: $4,211,985

11. “A United Kingdom”
Distributor: Fox Searchlight (acquired at TIFF)
Release Date: February 10th
Opening Theater Count: 4
Opening Average: $16,628
Current Gross: $3,901,302

12. “Sleight”
Distributor: BH Tilt
Release Date: April 28th
Opening Theater Count: 565
Opening Average: $3,012
Current Gross: $3,847,290

13. “Table 19″
Distributor: Fox Searchlight (acquired at Sundance)
Release Date: March 3rd
Opening Theater Count: 868
Opening Average: $1,821
Current Gross: $3,614,896

14. “Phoenix Forgotten”
Distributor: Cinelou Films
Release Date: April 21st
Opening Theater Count: 1,592
Opening Average: $1,141
Current Gross: $3,581,315

“Their Finest”

15. “Raees”
Distributor: Zee TV
Release Date: January 25th
Opening Theater Count: 265
Opening Average: $6,768
Current Gross: $3,262,954

16. “Their Finest”
Distributor: STX Entertainment
Release Date: April 7th
Opening Theater Count: 4
Opening Average: $19,049
Current Gross: $3,178,763

17. “Colossal”
Distributor: Neon
Release Date: April 7th
Opening Theater Count: 4
Opening Average: $30,057
Current Gross: $2,868,097

18. “The Oscar Nominated Short Films”
Distributor: Shorts International
Release Date: February 10th
Opening Theater Count: 206
Opening Average: $3,361
Current Gross: $2,835,355


19. “Kedi”
Distributor: Oscilloscope
Release Date: February 10th
Opening Theater Count: 1
Opening Average: $40,103
Current Gross: $2,625,882

20. “The Salesman”
Distributor: Cohen Media Group, Amazon
Release Date: January 7th
Opening Theater Count: 3
Opening Average: $23,693
Current Gross: $2,402,067

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Cut the Bollywood out ! It’s not Indie. Its mainstream in India.


THE CIRCLE is an independently financed film that was acquired for U.S. distribution by EuropaCorp — who released it theatrically via STX (as they also did with THEIR FINEST). The film has currently made just under 17 million domestically.


STX has released every film except for THE FINEST and DESITRO o/w in 2,000-3000+ theaters. THE CIRCLE was released in 3,163 theaters o/w with a contracted $22M domestic P&A spend (less than many wide releases but multiple times what the avg Indie/Specialty release will receive). STX will also release VALERIAN for Europa – which has a $200m budget. It shouldn’t be on the list either.


Per Indiewire’s statistics, many of 2017 and 2016’s highest grossing indies were released on an opening theater count of 2000-3000+. This includes “Before I Fall,” “The Witch,” “The Birth of a Nation,” “Hardcore Henry,” “The Promise” ($90m budget), etc.

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