The Butler Forest Whitaker

Forest Whitaker-Oprah Winfrey pic will expand to 1007 theaters

The Weinstein Co. will expand “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” on Friday into 1,007 U.S. theaters in its 16th weekend after the drama had played in only 71 locations over the Thanksgiving holiday.

The movie, starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey, has performed better than expected with over $115 million domestically since its Aug. 16 release.

“The Butler” grossed $35 million in its opening weekend, then took in $24 million and $23.7 million in the next two frames.

TWC’s President of Distribution Erik Lomis said, “We are excited to be bringing it back to theaters just as the holiday season begins, so that audiences who didn’t catch it the first time around have another opportunity at catching it on the big screen.”

Relativity’s thriller “Out of the Furnace,” in which Whitaker also appears, is the only new wide domestic release on Friday.

Meanwhile, the Weinstein Co.’s theatrical release “Fruitvale Station,” which has garnered recognition from the Gotham awards and critics’ groups, will get an early Digital HD release via homevid distrib Anchor Bay. The drama will be available in an early digital window starting Dec. 31. Starting Jan. 14, it will be available on Blu-ray, DVD and VOD.

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