The gay movies released Friday failed to attract sizable audiences in their debut weekend.
Outrage grossed an estimated $7,000 per screen in five cities. (Kirby Dick's previous documentary, This Film Is Not Yet Rated, grossed $15,332 per screen its opening weekend.) I think moviegoers were either repulsed by the subject matter or felt it was old news that has been done better by Michelangelo Signorile, Mike Rogers, et al.
The Garcia Lorca - Dali romance Little Ashes grossed $6,416 per screen. Middling reviews, a lack of star power, and indifference to the figures and story must have hurt attendance.
And yet the entirely, chest-thumpingly straight and with two big international stars, Rudo y Cursi did worst of all, grossing a paltry $3,009 per screen. (Seven years ago, before most Americans had heard of them, the stars' Y Tu Mama Tambien opened with $10,412 per screen.) Why? The stars got old and less cute? Or the movie wasn't gay enough?
The official stance is to blame Star Trek, but everyone knew that was going to be huge and counter programming often works.
Because art house movies open only where studios perceive demand for them, opening weekend per screen averages for indie films can be very high. For example, Brokeback Mountain opened on five screens with a $109,485 average. In March, the Valentino documentary opened with a $21,726 per screen and in its third week, when it expanded to four cities, its per theater gross was still over $14,000. Last month, even the Chorus Line documentary, Every Little Step, earned $8,563 per screen in its debut.
The current weekend numbers above are estimates. When final numbers are posted later, I will update.