Specialty box office: Woody Allen strikes again

Cate Blanchett nurses some Stoli while contemplating how astonishingly well her new film, "Blue Jasmine" is doing. Credit: Sony Pictures Classics
Cate Blanchett nurses some Stoli while contemplating how astonishingly well her new film, “Blue Jasmine” is doing.
Credit: Sony Pictures Classics

The fortunes of Woody Allen go up and down. Right now they’re up. According to Indiewire, “Blue Jasmine,” his 43 1/3 directorial work, starring Cate Blanchett as a disgraced socialite, did predictably great business this weekend, as befitting its strong critical notices. (We think it’s pretty terrific.) Less predictably, it had one of the highest screen averages in history. From only six theaters, “Jasmine” grossed $612,767, translating into $102,127 per screen. Only five other films have ever done that, namely “The Master,” “Moonrise Kingdom,” “Dreamgirls,” “Brokeback Mountain” and “Precious.” And of these, only “The Master” has failed to cross the $40 million line.

It’s worth noting that “Jasmine” performed slight better than Allen’s biggest recent hit, “Midnight in Paris,” which made a $99,834 average (also from six locations) back in 2011. Of course, that was a warm, likable word-of-mouth hit, whereas “Jasmine,” while often very funny (and often very not), is a more demanding, if still enjoyable work. Regardless, it’s his third film in a row to score big with audiences, washing away the recent, bitter taste of such underperformers as “You Will Meet a Tall, Dark Stranger” (to say nothing of his oft-grim output during the first half of the naughts).

All in all, it’s the best limited debut of 2013, besting the $87,667 average of “Spring Breakers” earlier this year. “Jasmine” expands in the coming weeks.

As for expansions, “Fruitvale Station” and “The Way, Way Back” both went nationwide, and both succeeded, if not as spectacularly as hoped. “Fruitvale,” a docudrama about Oscar Grant, an African American youth recklessly murdered by hothead police (which isn’t remotely similar to events looming large in the public’s awareness), went from 34 to 1,064 theaters, and grossed $4,657,000, for a fine $4,377 average. That put it in the weekend’s overall top ten. Its cume, after only three weeks, stands at $6,339,316.

The all-star I-was-never-the-same-after-that-summer romp “The Way, Way Back” expanded only to 886 (from 582) and grossed $3,300,000, for an acceptable $3,725 average. Its total gross stands at $8,931,441 — just over a million dollars more than Fox Searchlight paid for it when it played Sundance.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Sierra Leone Ebola patient, recovered from family, dies…

An Ebola patient whose family sparked a nationwide hunt when they forcefully removed her from a treatment center and took her to a traditional healer has died.

Local

VIDEO: Cop reassigned as NYPD investigates alleged head…

An officer alleged to have stomped on a Brooklyn man's head last week had his gun taken away and placed on modified duty.

National

New York Times calls for legalization of pot

The New York Times editorial board on Saturday endorsed a repeal of the federal ban on marijuana, becoming the largest paper in the nation to back the idea.

National

Two injured after cable snaps on Ohio amusement…

(Reuters) - A cable on a large swing ride at an Ohio amusement park snapped and struck two riders as the swing was in motion,…

Music

Newport Folk Festival: Photo gallery of 35 moments…

As has been the tradition since Bob Dylan plugged in a bajillion years ago, the Newport Folk Festival embraces more musical genres than its name implies.

Music

MKTO: Behind the bromance

MKTO's Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller talk about the American Dream tour, Demi Lovato and getting turned down by girls.

Arts

James Earl Jones and Rose Byrne head to…

Two-time Tony winner James Earl Jones returns to the New York stage next month as an eccentric grandfather in a revival of the 1930s comedy…

Movies

Box office: Scarlett Johansson wins battle of brains…

Scarlett Johansson's "Lucy" handily dispatched with Dwayne Johnson's "Hercules" over the weekend.

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

MLB

Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Auto racing

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Wellbeing

This Week In Health: Friends share similar DNA,…

Friends share similar DNA, study finds Location: U.S. Study subjects: Nearly 2,000 people Results: When it comes to our social networks, it seems that birds of…

Education

Are liberal arts colleges turning away from the…

Bryn Mawr College, a small women's college located just outside of Philadelphia, announced last week that it would be making standardized tests like the SAT…

Education

Recent grads discover school superintendent plagiarized parts of…

  Two recent high school graduates made a surprising discovery about the commencement speech their school superintendent delivered at their graduation: portions of it was copied…

Career

Feeling stuck? Get out of the entry-level job…

Television and movies may be littered with 20-something characters who seem directionless when it comes to their careers, but author Mary Traina says she finds…