Box-Office Report: "Laurel Canyon" and "Irreversible" Fly High in Limited Release as "The Quiet American" Expands
by Brian Brooks
"Laurel Canyon" opened last weekend, winding up the road to high grosses, while France's "Irreversible" seduced audiences in L.A. and New York. "The Safety of Objects" opened more cautiously and Oscar-nominated "The Quiet American" nearly doubled its number of screenings.
Sony Pictures Classics' "Laurel Canyon" sang the happy box office tune in its debut release in limited screens over the weekend. Grosses over the weekend for the film, directed by Lisa Cholodenko, totaled $149,099 on 10 screens. The film, starring Frances McDormand as a hard-living record producer who must contend with her conservative son (Christian Bale) did a rockin' $14,910 per-screen average. Sony Classics' "Spider" by David Cronenberg took in $163,833 on weekend three of release on 35 screens ($4,681 average) for a cume of $463,164.
Also having le gran opening over the weekend was Gaspar Noe's controversial Cannes 2002 favorite "Irreversible." The French film, distributed by Lions Gate, took in $60,086 on seven screens during the weekend, for an $8,584 average.
Suburban-set "The Safety of Objects," by Rose Troche, opened more quietly with $86,250 on 32 screens. The IFC Films release, starring Glenn Close, Dermot Mulroney, Jessica Campbell, and Patricia Clarkson, had a $2,695 per-site average.
Miramax again expanded Phillip Noyce's "The Quiet American," adding 159 screens and taking in more than $1.15 million on 381 screens. The film, starring Oscar nominee Sir Michael Caine, averaged $3,027 per screen and has a new total of just under $7.3 million. Meanwhile, Noyce's other Miramax release "Rabbit Proof Fence," passed a new total of $5 million as it played on 115 screens, taking in $183,670 ($1,597 average). And, "City of God" surged just past $2 million on 67 screens, earning $241,284 ($3,601 average).
Gus Van Sant's "Gerry" added $26,142 on 13 screens over the weekend for a $2,010 average. Since its Valentine's Day release, the film has made $136,759.
Samuel Goldwyn's "He Loves Me He Loves Me Not" played 17 screens for a $53,136 weekend. The per-screen average figured to $3,126 for a total of $365,899. And Artisan Entertainment's "Amandla!" took in $44,260 on seven screens for an impressive $6,323 average in its third weekend of release for a total of $109,011.
"Bowling for Columbine" struck past $19.1 million over the weekend on 106 screens. The film, which received a best original screenplay honor over the weekend from the Writers Guild of America, took in $162,715 for a $1,535 average on its 21st week of release.
This week, Fox Searchlight will open the U.K. hit "Bend it Like Beckham." Next Friday, openings will include Jonas Akerlund's "Spun," Rakhshan Bani-Etemad's "Under the Skin of the City" at Lincoln Plaza and Quad Cinemas, as well as "Journeys with George" at Quad Cinemas.