Jawan’ In Top 10; ‘Dumb Money’ Banks On Word Of Mouth As Stars Sidelined By Strike Specialty Box Office

Bollywood’s Jawan and star Shah Ruhk Khan livened up a slow specialty market, grossing close to $2.5 million in 776 locations in week two for a cume close to $12.2 million. The Yash Raj actioner is no. 6 at the domestic box office.

Its weekend split was $694,724k Fri.; $1.024m Sat,; $775k Sunday as Jawan races to records in India, including the top box office opening last week for a Hindi film. Commentators are noting that the dubbed Telugu and Tamil versions – a key to box office in India, and Stateside — are also raking in more than they have for any other Hindi film. Indian films continue to be a gift to U.S. exhibitors as loyal audiences who follow release schedule closely turn out weekly and in force for the films that open day and date. A breathlessly awaited, well-reviewed movie there is the same here.

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Sony notable Dumb Money by Craig Gillepsie (I, Tonya, Lars and the Real Girl), banked a projected $217k for the first leg of three-step platform release in eight theaters across six markets (LA, NYC, Chicago, DC, Boston, San Francisco). The film captures the meme-stock frenzy that saw scrappy retail traders flood onto social media, egging each other on to buoy GameStop and other shares in dramatic showdown with traditional Wall Street players. It made $92K Friday, $74K Saturday and an estimated $50K Sunday for a per-screen average of $27,080. A decent number since there was zero publicity due to the actors’ strike by very marketable stars from Pete Davidson to Seth Rogen, to Paul Dano, and that hurts. Gillepsie did some Q&As in NYC and LA.

The R-rated film that premiered to strong reviews at TIFF is banking on word of mouth as it expands to 200+ screens next weekend and goes wide September 29. No social data but anecdotal reports from theaters of positive reactions from advance screenings, and high audience scores.

The original release strategy was a four-step platform that would likely have garnered significantly higher PSAs on fewer screens this weekend. But Sony condensed the plan and skipped a step to leave a few weeks for Dumb Money before the mid-October opening of Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour – an event that’s hit $65 million in presales, with a $100 million opening within reach.

Other specialty openings: From Roadside Attractions, Camp Hide Out is posting an estimated three-day gross of $510,160 on 848 screens for a PSA of $602.

The Inventor stop-motion animation from Blue Fox Entertainment grossed an estimated $201k+ from 700 runs. From flying contraptions, war machines, and studying cadavers, Leonardo da Vinci takes on the grand meaning of life itself with the help of French princess, Marguerite de Nevarre. Directed by Jim Capobianco, the film stars Stephen Fry, Marion Cotillard, Daisy Ridley, Matt Berry & Gauthier Battoue.

Limited release: Documentary Invisible Beauty from Magnolia Pictures grossed $10,500 at the Film Forum. Expanding on Friday to LA, Chicago, Washington, DC and Atlanta. Fashion revolutionary Bethann Hardison looks back on her journey as a pioneering Black model, modelling agent and activist.

Kino Lorber’s release of Radical Wolfe grossed $8,270 at IFC Center. Based on bestselling author Michael Lewis’s 2015 Vanity Fair article, the documentary traces the author’s rise from a journalism pioneer to bestselling novelist and celebrity whose singular voice and iconic white suit made him one of the most recognizable literary figures of all time. Expands to LA, Toronto and additional markets Sept. 22.

Thriller Rebel from Yellow Veil Pictures grossed $6,500, also at IFC Center. By Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah. it expands to LA’s Nuart next weekend. A young man leaves Belgium to help war victims in Syria, but once there is stranded and forced to join ISIS. His younger brother back home becomes easy prey for radical recruiters who promise a reunion.

Oscilloscope’s Canary grossed $8,350 on three screens. The distributor — in partnership with REI Co-Op Studios and Boardwalk Pictures — presents the true story of Dr. Lonnie Thompson, the world’s greatest living climatologist, in NYC, LA and Columbus, OH. Expanding Wed. nationwide to over 140 theaters.

Noting Oscilloscope’s CatVideoFest 2023 has crossed half a million theatrical in week seven, grossing $30k on 20 screens for a cume of $502k. It’s a new best for the event that celebrates all things feline and which Oscilloscope has handled since 2019. The compilation, which has also raised over $50k for cats in need, will continue to add new engagements throughout the fall.

Holdovers: Variance Films’ expanded Amerikatsi, Armenia’s official Oscar submission for Best International Feature, grossed an estimated $91,932 on 19 screens in week two for a per-screen average of $4,839 and a new cume of $167,697.

Also Noting Bottoms from MGM is heading towards $10 million in week four. Emma Seligman’s rauchy teen comedy starring Rachel Sennott and Ayo Edebiri has successfully reached a younger movie-going audience and racked up another $1.2M on its way to a current estimated cume of $9.87M.

And A24’s low-budget horror Talk To Me, ditto with younger fans, is still on 570 screens, where it grossed $567,472 this weekend for a cume of nearly $47 million since it opened July 28.

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