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Specialty Box Office: 'Joe' and 'Ruby' Lead Debuts; 'Beasts' Crosses $4 Million

Photo of Peter Knegt By Peter Knegt | Indiewire July 29, 2012 at 1:29PM

A diverse quartet of new indie releases made their way to theaters this weekend --  Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris's "Ruby Sparks," William Friedkin's "Killer Joe" and Sundance docs "Searching For Sugar Man" and "Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry." All posted respectable numbers alongside a slew of holdovers that continued to post strong numbers, most notably "Beasts of the Southern Wild," which expanded beyond 200 screens and crossed the $4 million mark.
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"Ruby Sparks"
"Ruby Sparks"

A diverse quartet of new indie releases made their way to theaters this weekend --  Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris's "Ruby Sparks," William Friedkin's "Killer Joe" and Sundance docs "Searching For Sugar Man" and "Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry." All posted respectable numbers alongside a slew of holdovers that continued to post strong numbers, most notably "Beasts of the Southern Wild," which expanded beyond 200 screens and crossed the $4 million mark.

Check out the full rundown below.

The Debuts:

"Killer Joe" (Magnolia)
Despite its NC-17 rating, LD Entertainment saw a good start from its release of William Friedkin's crime thriller "Killer Joe." Starring Matthew McConaughey (who is having an incredible year) in the title role, the film took in $37,864 for a $12,621 per-theater-average. That's the best average of any film in release save "The Dark Knight Rises."

"Ruby Sparks" (Fox Searchlight)
Debuting on a more aggressive 13 screens was Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris's long-awaited follow up to "Little Miss Sunshine," "Ruby Sparks." Fox Searchlight released the film -- which stars Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan (who also wrote the script) -- on Wednesday to decent mid-week grosses (it took in $39,836 before Friday).  Over the weekend, "Sparks" managed $151,881, averaging $11,683 and taking its total to $191,717.

The film performed best in Los Angeles and New York where it was out-grossed only by 'Dark Knight" in the Landmark LA, the Arclight Hollywood, and the Lincoln Square in New York. Fox Searchlight will add 20 new markets next week as well as increasing the total theatre count to between 65-70 theatres.

"Searching For Sugar Man" (Sony Pictures Classics)
Sony Pictures Classics released Malik Bendjelloul's doc "Searching For Sugar Man" on 3 screens this weekend. The film -- which won the Audience Award at Sundance earlier this year -- follows two South Africans who set out to discover what happened to their unlikely musical hero, the mysterious 1970s rock 'n' roller, Rodriguez. It took in $28,533 over the weekend, averaging $9,511.

"Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry" (Sundance Selects)
Another documentary alum of the Sundance Film Festival, Alison Klayman's "Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry," was released on 5 screens this weekend care of Sundance Selects and posted similar numbers to "Sugar Man." The film --  which chronicles artist and activist Ai Weiwei as he prepares for a series of exhibitions and gets into an increasing number of clashes with the Chinese government -- grossed $45,000 for a $9,000 per-theater-average. The film will open in the top 15 markets this coming weekend

For a report on holdover releases, including "The Queen of Versailles," "The Imposter," "Farewell My Queen," "Beasts of the Southern Wild," "To Rome With Love" and "Moonrise Kingdom," continue to the next page.

This article is related to: Box Office, Box Office





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