Specialty Box Office: Will Ferrell's Spanish-Language 'Casa de Mi Padre' Pleases With $2.2 Mil
The film, also starring Diego Luna and Gael Garcia Bernal, played primarily to Hispanic audiences; Oscar-winner 'The Artist' hits $42 million domestically as its run winds down.
Will Ferrell's quirky subtitled indie comedy Casa de Mi Padre made a strong showing among Hispanic moviegoers as it opened in select markets across the country, grossing an estimated $2.2 million from 382 theaters to crack the top 10 chart and come in No. 9. The film's location average was $5,759.
The Spanish-language film, also starring Genesis Rodriguez, Diego Luna and Gael Garcia Bernal, was released by Lionsgate under its Pantelion Films label, a joint-venture between the studio and Televisa.
While most Pantelion titles open only in Hispanic markets, Casa de Mi Padre also debuted in such cities as Boston and Seattle, hoping to capitalize on Ferrell's star status. According to exit data, 68 percent of the overall audience was Hispanic, while 51 percent were male.
"This movie is unique and different," said Lionsgate's distribution honcho David Spitz. "It's a modern-day spaghetti Western."
Nala Films and Ferrell's Gary Sanchez production banner made Casa de Mi Padre for roughly $6 million; the pic was later acquired by Lionsgate. Written by Funny or Die's Andrew Steele, the comedy was directed by former Saturday Night Live writer Matt Piedmont. In the film, Ferrell goes to war with a drug lord in order to save his father's Mexican ranch.
The other specialty film debuting over the weekend was Jason Segel-Ed Helms starrer Jeff, Who Lives at Home. Opening in 254 theaters, the Paramount pic grossed $840,000 for a location average of 3,307. Jay and Mark Duplass wrote and directed the film.
Elsewhere, Oscar winner The Artist crossed the $42 million mark domestically in its 17th weekend, grossing $1.1 million from 1,155 theaters for a cume of $42.1 million. With the movie's run winding down, it may only reach $45 million domestically, short of the $50 million or more that Harvey Weinstein had predicted following the Academy Awards.
Overseas, The Artist has grossed nearly $75 million, putting the French film's worldwide total at nearly $117 million.
Among other holdovers, Roadside Attractions was pleased with the second weekend performance of Jennifer Westfeldt's comedy Friends With Kids. The indie film grossed $1.5 million as it expanded into a total of 640 theaters for a hearty 10-day cume of $4.2 million and location average of $2,344.
Also in its second weekend, Ewan McGregor-Emily Blunt comedy-adventure Salmon Fishing in the Yemen grossed an estimated $455,000 from 62 locations for a 10-day cume of $763,400 and location average of $7,339.
Israeli film Footnote upped its theater count from two to six in its second outing, grossing $72,108 for a location average of $12,018 and cume of $143,848. Distributed by Sony Pictures Classics in the U.S., Footnote was nominated for the Oscar for best foreign language film.