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12/01/2008

Major markets got 'Milk'; will it play in Red-merica?

by Jeremy Hooper

Picture 1-223It was a HUGE weekend for the barely-unveiled Milk. Playing on just 36 screens in its first five days of limited release, it's estimated that the Harvey biopic came in with a whopping $51,833 per screen average, $1,866,000 gross:

November 26–30, 2008 -- 5-Day Thanksgiving Weekend [Box Office Mojo]

We'll have to wait until next weekend to see how the film does in wide U.S. release. Our marketing strategy: Convince Americans that "Milk Friday" is the new traditional way to celebrate the eighth day after Thanksgiving. Hey, it works for the crass consumer rituals known as "Black Friday," "Cyber Monday," and "Valentine's Day" -- so why not for a terrific flick with a potential to serve one in ways that past-their-prime Ugg boots never could?

Feel free to use our marketing expertise, professional Milkers! As for everyone else: Go see Four Christmases Milk!

**SEE ALSO: Our MILK timeline:

PART 1: Brush up on your Harvey: A prequel [G-A-Y]
PART 2: 31 years, one million thank yous [G-A-Y]

*Our complete Harvey Milk archive

**UPDATE: The original numbers were just estimated. It looks like the actual figure was more like a $40,385 per screen average for a $1,453,844 first week gross. Still very good.

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Your thoughts

Why did they do a limited release first? When I goto movie listing sites, it appears not to be listed next weekend :/

Posted by: queerunity | Dec 1, 2008 8:22:24 AM

queerunity: That's common with independent and smaller films. Gives time to build buzz for a national rollout.

Not sure why you're not seeing it scheduled for next weekend. Friday is the nationwide release.

Posted by: G-A-Y | Dec 1, 2008 8:35:55 AM

oh ok, I didn't know that. yeah, not sure why it isn't listed but hopefully I get to see it this weekend :)

Posted by: queerunity | Dec 1, 2008 9:16:23 AM

We saw it at a sold out show on Friday afternoon in Chelsea. Well made, tears streaming down my face throughout, ending was tastefully done, not over the top, no brains on the window. SO good we will more than likely see it again. Great performances by all concerned and excellent directing by Gus Van Sant.

Posted by: John Ozed | Dec 1, 2008 10:17:43 AM

Consider yourself lucky, queerunity - I won't get to see it till January 16th - and my friend in Belgium won't until MARCH!

Posted by: tavdy79 | Dec 1, 2008 5:02:47 PM

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