Everyone want to see Paul Thomas Anderson’s new film, The Master. The movie, which is supposedly based on the story of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard and the early days of the controversial movement, is one of the front-runners for the Oscar season already, and the early report of box office attendance gives proof to the rumors. The Master broke box office records during its debut weekend in New York and Los Angeles. The Master took in an impressive $729,745, which is a record per-screen average of $145,949.
“We didn’t do exit polls but from eyeballing the ArcLight (Cinemas), everyone in Los Angeles showed up,” said Erik Lomis, president of theatrical distribution of the Weinstein Company. ”We knew we would do a lot of business but we didn’t think it would be this big. We knew from not only the pop-up screenings and the guerrilla marketing PTA does but also from the Venice Film Festival and the Toronto (International) Film Festival that we had something special. But you can never expect these kinds of numbers — it blew the doors off the theaters.”
When Paul Thomas Anderson makes a movie, it’s a big deal even now. With declining movie attendance and weak DVD sales, The Master could not come at a better time. The big debut is a great sign, and it will be interesting to see how it expands when it moves from 5 screens to a nationwide release.
Tags: the master, paul thomas anderson, the master box office, box office records, hollywood, movie debuts, the master sets per screen record, the master rakes in almost 6000 per screen, new york and los angeles, the master debuts in new york and la, the weinstein company, erik lomis, arclight cinemas