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Eric Bana doc gets box office love

'Beast' scores with Australian audiences

SYDNEY — Eric Bana’s directorial debut, a documentary ode to his beloved four-wheeled friend called “Love the Beast,” has notched the second-highest opening week gross for a domestic doc in Oz.

“Beast” took A$309,000 (US$210,000), $241,000, if sneaks are included, from 59 screens this week.

Featuring guest turns from “Top Gear” aficionado Jeremy Clarkson, Jay Leno, Phil McGraw and a conga line of his less-famous friends, the 90-minute film about Bana’s cherished 1974 XB Ford Falcon coupe has been received favorable reviews.

“Beast” is being distributed by niche shingle Madman with a pattern that mimics the “Bra Boys” doc that two years ago grossed $265,000 opening weekend from a slightly smaller release.

“Boys” went on to become Australia’s highest-grossing non-Imax domestic doc with $1.15 million. Pic about the notorious Bra Boys surf gang was narrated by Russell Crowe.

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