Oscar winners can expect B.O. bump
Even after 14 weeks of sterling theatrical play, the Weinstein Co.’s “The King’s Speech” should continue to sell plenty of tickets thanks to a boffo Oscars night and revised PG-13 rating, while Fox Searchlight’s “Black Swan” will keep twirling until its late-March DVD release.
Four major Oscar wins — for best picture, director Tom Hooper, actor Colin Firth and screenwriter David Seidler — will likely further the run of “The King’s Speech,” which had already cumed more than $110 million domestically through Sunday, with worldwide totals north of $250 million. Pic is one of the more resilient box office performers to win best picture in the past decade.
“Black Swan,” which nabbed lead actress honors for Natalie Portman, has been another standout B.O. player, with worldwide totals nearing $230 million.
“There should be renewed interest in the film for another two weeks, and then attendance tends to taper off,” anticipated Searchlight distrib exec Richard Shamban.
Both films have some uninpeded theatrical playtime left. “The King’s Speech” hits DVD on April 19, “Black Swan” at the end of next month.
Sony’s “The Social Network,” already on DVD, nabbed honors for Aaron Sorkin for adapted screenplay, along with score and editing kudos. Pic grossed $218 million in global B.O. receipts, though it’s still screening in just 269 U.S. locations. It hit DVD on Jan. 11, posting approximately $18 million in U.S. disc sales to date.
This year’s list of Oscar nominees recognized an unusually diverse crop of specialty titles (“The King’s Speech” and “Black Swan”) and B.O. powerhouses (“Inception” and “Toy Story 3”) — a result of the expanded best pic category.
Even a pair of 2010 Sundance titles, “Winter’s Bone” and “The Kids Are All Right,” wound up vying for Oscar’s top prize. And while neither took trophies, each proved potent in last year’s indie realm. Focus Features’ “The Kids Are All Right” scored $31.1 million worldwide, while “Winter’s Bone,” from Roadside Attractions, grossed a solid (at least for the low-budget indie) $11.4 million globally.
“The King’s Speech” is poised to continue its topnotch exploits at Stateside plexes, especially given the film’s lead-up to Sunday night’s Oscarcast. Pic’s week-to-week perfs have seen drops of less than 20% for the past three weeks, with a stellar 17% uptick this week.
And given the PG-13-rated version the MPAA approved Friday, “The King’s Speech” likely could draw an even broader aud post-Oscars.
Paramount’s “True Grit,” which came away without wins despite 10 nominations, is arguably one of 2010’s best-performing holiday holdovers, having grossed $167 million domestically. Par’s just now starting an aggressive overseas rollout, including bows this weekend in France, Germany, India and South Korea.
Among the year’s other most-nommed titles, five already had been released on DVD prior to nominations, including “Inception,” “Toy Story 3,” “The Social Network,” “The Kids Are All Right” and “Winter’s Bone.”
Fox Searchlight’s pic nominee “127 Hours,” which took in approximately $6 million since the noms, will continue to play limited theatrically though it hits DVD on Tuesday.
“127 Hours” was shut out, but nominee-host James Franco could boost appeal for the film, as could wins in the supporting acting races for “The Fighter,” which launches on homevid March 15.