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i am not a stuffed tiger.

numbers game

you've probably already read that Farenheit 9/11 beat the too scary for words White Chicks at the box office this weekend. Salon's "war room" reprints Variety's analysis to reveal striking differences in the per engagement figures:
Fahrenheit 9/11 opened on 868 screens and brought in $25,115 "per engagement." The next most successful movie this weekend was White Chicks, which also debuted and played on 2,726 screens -- about triple that of Fahrenheit, yet it brought in only $7,190 per engagement.[salon]

While this probably isn't surprising to anyone who stood in a long line [mm] to see the film, it does make the box office record seem all the more remarkable.

It also shows that IFC/Lion's Gate was incredibly smart to release while a 21.8 million dollar weekend would still be newsworthy1 -- before Spiderman 2 rolls out with a huge Independence Day box office. If HSX is any indication of potential for box office success, the $130M (Fri-Sun) call is selling for > $10. [hsx]

(1) ... though I'm sure they were really going for a documentary record.


I don't know. It doesn't impress me.

My brother, James: "Katherine! F 9/11 only came out in 838 (I forgot the #) and it still won #1 over the weekend."

My brother hates Moore, but he was impressed, nonetheless.

Me: "Um, James. What did it have to compete with?"
James: "White Chicks."
Me: "Yeah."
you're right that it was in incredibly weak weekend for openings (also opening: The Notebook and Two Brothers which serve entirely different demographics), which must have been strategic. The point is just that using a number of measures, the film's opening weekend was exceptionally good. I kind of doubt that there were many people who saw Farenheit 9/11 instead of White Chicks.

Still, the fact that it broke the record for total box office earnings for a documentary in its opening weekend speaks to its success. I don't know how the # of screens compares with other documentaries -- 800+ might be big compared to the number of screens showing Winged Migration during its opening weekend.
documentary? I thought it was an animated motion picture. Pixar is always pulling my chain.