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Box Office Shocker: 'Midnight in Paris' Becomes Woody Allen's Highest-Grossing Film in 25 Years

Midnight in Paris
Roger Arpajou/Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

UPDATED: The film has now earned $23.3 million, surpassing 'Vicky Cristina Barcelona' and 'Match Point.'

Midnight in Paris now has the potential to become Woody Allen’s top-grossing film of all time at the domestic box office, as well as Sony Pictures Classics’ biggest title after Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

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Through Wednesday, Midnight in Paris has grossed $23.3 million at the domestic box office, eclipsing the $23.2 million grossed each by Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Match Point. Midnight's aim now is to beat the $40.1 million earned 25 years ago by Hannah and Her Sisters.

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Midnight in Paris, with a diverse cast including Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard and Kathy Bates, is one of those rare specialty films that expands beyond the art house crowd to general audiences. The movie opened in only six theaters May 20 to score one of the best location averages of all time ($99,834) at the domestic box office. Now, it’s playing in more than 1,000 theaters.

In the film, Wilson’s character discovers an alternate reality while in Paris with his wife. Observers believe there are several reasons the film is resonating.

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For one, the movie embraces Paris in a way that appeals to anyone who has either visited the city or wants to visit. And Wilson plays the sort of “everyman” character that moviegoers tend to see in more mainstream films, versus in art house titles (or in an Allen’s film). It also helps that critics across the country -- and not just in New York -- have given Midnight in Paris great reviews.

Midnight in Paris is a sizable victory for Sony Classics and its toppers Michael Barker and Tom Bernard. The company’s highest grosser of all time is 2000's Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, which grossed $128.1 million at the domestic box office, followed by 2005's Capote, which earned $28.8 million.

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Midnight in Paris should overtake Capote and hit $30 million by July 1. Sony Classics expects it to be a popular choice among adults over the July 4th weekend, a lucrative time for moviegoing.

Allen’s movie will compete for older eyeballs with Universal’s Larry Crowne, directed by and starring Tom Hanks opposite Julia Roberts.

Email: Pamela.McClintock@thr.com