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As the specialized world begins to move past a rich diet of awards contenders — still providing the bulk of the gross — films from established directors opened in New York and Los Angeles this weekend, led by British auteur Sally Potter’s “The Party” (Roadside Attractions). Mark Pellington’s “Nostalgia” (Bleecker Street), with a similar strong ensemble cast, succumbed to weak reviews.
Russian foreign-language Oscar nominee “The Loveless” (Sony Pictures Classics) opened well for a subtitled release in two cities. While Francois Ozon’s sexy “Double Love” (Cohen Media) got off to a big-city national start during the week, the result is at the low end of the French director’s films.
Hype - Results - Year - Oscar - Nominees
With all the hype on the stronger-than-average results among this year’s Oscar nominees, comic book movie “Black Panther” in its first three days totaled more than the grosses for the entire runs of even top Best Picture nominees “Dunkirk” and “Get Out.” That’s where the money is, even with decent returns for most of the contenders. Unfortunately, outstanding reviews for the Marvel entry squashed the weekend results for more limited films.
English - Pioneer - Sally - Potter - Feature
English pioneer Sally Potter directed her first feature nearly 35 years ago; she has yet to exceed the heights of her 1993 Sundance breakout “Orlando” starring Tilda Swinton, which yielded the equivalent of almost $12 million. This black-and-white 71 minute drawing room ensemble assembles a group of friends to celebrate the major political appointment of a woman (Kristin Scott Thomas) in the British government. But disconcerting news about her husband (Timothy Spall) changes the tone of the soiree. Her strong cast, including Patricia Clarkson and Emily Mortimer, likely elevated results.
The gross falls below 2013’s “Ginger and Rosa,” starring Elle Fanning, Christina Hendricks and Alessandro Nivola, which A24 opened to $43,000, also in three theaters.
Cities - Friday
What comes next: Additional major cities open this Friday.
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