The drama about a legal battle to recover art confiscated by the Nazis stars Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds and Tatiana Maslany and made $2.1 million in its debut weekend. It premiered in 258 theaters, and the studio, which had initially expected to add 250 locations this weekend and roll out the film more gradually, is now accelerating its distribution plan.
“It’s time to pull the trigger,” said Erik Lomis, the Weinstein Company’s distribution chief. “It was on a slower course, but we think it will get some love in the marketplace.”
“Woman in Gold” is based on the true story of a Jewish refugee and a young lawyer who battle the Austrian government to retrieve a Gustav Klimt painting that was taken from her family during World War II. The picture received an A CinemaScore, with females and ticket buyers over 50 giving it an A plus. Exit polls were also strong, with 86% of the audience reporting they would definitely recommend the film.
“That’s ridiculously high,” said Lomis. “It’s as good as anything we’ve had here, and that includes ‘The Artist,’ ‘The King’s Speech’ and ‘The Imitation Game.'”
Reviewers were not as kind, handing the picture a mediocre 49% “rotten” rating on Rotten Tomatoes. With “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” winding down its run, the studio sees an opportunity to become the de facto choice for seniors.
“If you’re over 50 and you’re looking for something to see, we’re your team,” said Lomis.